Implementing Maybo Training - Our guest interview

Security Operational Manager for Brighton and Sussex University Hospitals NHS Trust, Simon Whitehorn, takes time out of his busy schedule to speak to us about his personal experience of using Maybo's conflict resolution and clinical assault reduction training.

What does your role involve?
"My primary role is to lead on day to day measures to reduce the risk of violence towards staff. This ranges from setting policy, looking at environmental factors that may have an impact, which is particularly relevant as we are currently designing a large new hospital building at Brighton.  In addition, I deliver conflict management and assault avoidance techniques for clinical staff and physical intervention skills for emergency response.  I follow up on incidents of assault on staff to look at what actions we could take, including reporting assaults to the police where appropriate.  I also undertake investigations into all other criminal behaviour that may impact on the trust, such as theft and criminal damage."

What is the main work of your team?
"The in-house security team is there to help keep staff, patients and visitors safe.  They undertake patrols, attend incidents of violent/aggressive or inappropriate behaviour across the hospital sites, act as a deterrent, conduct initial investigations into thefts etc and manage the car parking facilities across the site, a task that can lead to conflict."

What type of incidents does your team get involved in?
"The security team deals with a range of incidents, from searching for missing patients, dealing with lost property, giving directions around the site, supporting clinical colleagues with dis-orientated patients and confronting individuals engaging in problematic behaviour."

What are the particular challenges you/your team face in terms of managing violence?
"In any clinical setting there are specific issues that mean the Security team needs to be flexible in how they approach and respond to situations.  For example, in A&E how do they respond to a person shouting at the reception staff?  If they adopt a confrontational style they may not discover that the person concerned has just arrived having been told a loved one has been admitted following an accident.  A patient displaying challenging behaviours may have a range of clinical conditions including brain injury or dementia."

How has Maybo's training helped you to meet these challenges?
"The biggest benefit for the Trust in using the Maybo skill set is that it promotes consistency across the various wards and departments. The conflict management approach is focused on prevention, whilst addressing Primary, Secondary and Tertiary responses to the risks of violence and aggression trustwide. The assault avoidance and physical intervention techniques are low arousal and sufficiently flexible to ensure staff in different roles and settings get the skills directly relevant to their needs. This approach enables them to respond appropriately to the varying risks they may face, from a patient in ITU trying to pull tubes, a disorientated older patient at risk if they wander and fall, through to a younger, fitter patient displaying aggressive behaviours linked to drug or alcohol use."

Are there any skills, techniques that you have found particularly effective, if so what are these and how do they help?
"Our nursing staff have particularly welcomed the concepts of surrounding positioning and subtle containment skills that help to avoid injury to staff and patients when in close proximity. This is universally accepted as being preferable to holding patients limbs, especially if those patients are frail and have poor tissue viability."

Have you made any changes to the way staff operate as a result of the training?
"The introduction of training that addresses every day risks, such as clinically related assaults and managing confused patients, has been welcomed by staff and we are seeing positive changes in working practices as a result."

Have you/ your staff noticed improvements in incident management or number of incidents or severity of incidents since the training?
"It is early days but many staff are acknowledging that where, in the past, they may not have formally reported incidents of violent or aggressive behaviour they will do so increasingly in the future.  It will be interesting to see if that is the case when we review our incident data later in the year."


Posted by Maybo on July 10, 2012


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