PUBLIC SAFETY AND INTERPERSONAL VIOLENCECommunities with high levels of crime and violence are also among the most likely to experience widespread economic and social instability. High rates of incarceration, the threat of domestic abuse, child abuse, and interpersonal violence, and prevalent street crime can lead to significant difficulties with maintaining healthy behaviors and accessing care.
Homicide takes more than 16,000 lives each year, and is the leading cause of death for people aged 15 to 24. In 2011, six percent of high school-aged youths said they skipped at least one day of school in a 30-day period due to feeling too unsafe to attend.
Source: FBI / FactCheck.org
Violence can also easily spill over into the healthcare setting, putting clinicians and other staff members at risk. Healthcare organizations spend around $2.7 billion each year on proactive and reactive violence response efforts, the American Hospital Association said in a 2017 report.
The figure includes $280 million for preparedness and prevention, $852 million in uncompensated care for victims of violence, more than $1 billion on training to prevent violence in hospitals, and $429 million coping with care, indemnity, and other costs resulting from violence against hospital employees.
The American Society for Healthcare Risk Management provides a healthcare facility workplace violence assessment toolkit that can help organizations reduce their incidence of violence against staff.
Addressing violence in the community and between individuals requires a concerted, policy-based approach to eliminating opportunities for violence, reducing income inequality that leads to violent tensions, and ensuring that victims of abuse and violence have the resources, support, and skills they need to leave dangerous situations.
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