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Violence is Preventable: A Best Practices Guide for Launching & Sustaining a Hospital-based Program to Break the Cycle of Violence

NCJ Number
Date Published
163 pages
This guide presents "best practices" in hospital-based or hospital-linked violence prevention programs for youth treated in the hospital for violence-related injuries.
The concept for such interventions stems from a 1998 recommendation by the U.S. Justice Department's Office for Victims of Crime (OVC). OVC recommended "that hospital-based counseling and prevention programs be established in medical facilities that provide services to gang-violence victims." The "best practices" for such programs refers to evidence-based practice, promising practices, emerging practice, value-based practice, and practice-based evidence. Although there is little published research that has used randomized evaluations of such programs to determine the practices that are effective, there is substantial information about practices in hospital-based violence prevention programs that have produced positive outcomes. This guide is based on the public-health approach to violence, which "seeks to improve the health and safety of all individuals by addressing underlying risk factors that increase the likelihood that an individual will become a victim or a perpetrator of violence." Following an introductory chapter on the rationale and strategy for hospital-based violence prevention programs, a chapter outlines steps for selecting the population to be served by the violence prevention program. This is followed by a chapter on establishing program goals and objectives. The importance of and strategies for securing hospital support for the program is addressed in another chapter. A chapter then discusses the nature and importance of strategic partnerships in planning, implementing, and sustaining the program. Another chapter focuses on the identification of patients who should receive program services, assessing risk for repeat victimization, and the crisis management of treatment for violence victims. Other chapters provide guidance on intervention services after the initial crisis, making informed direct-service staff hiring decisions, training and supervision for direct-service staff, conducting program evaluations, program funding, and advocacy or systems change. Appended list of resources and a description of the National Network of Hospital-based Violence Intervention Programs

Date Published: January 1, 2011