This website uses non-intrusive cookies to improve your user experience. You can visit our cookie privacy page for more information.

Further guidance

HSE Guidance

Other pages on the HSE website:

Case studies

These case studies were developed by the Health and Safety Laboratory (HSL). They show real examples of how employers have tackled the problem of violence to lone workers:

Small businesses



Research Report RR440 - HSE published a research report on 23 March 2006, which investigated the effectiveness of training in the management of violence and aggression in healthcare. The research was undertaken by the Institute of Work, Health and Organisations, Nottingham University.

A further report, RR495 was published on 12 October 2006 in collaboration with the NHS Security Management Service. This identifies the competencies that make for an effective violence management trainer and reviews the practices and procedures associated with the selection, development and management of trainers. A competency framework has been developed which identifies the competencies considered necessary for the effective delivery of violence management training, and these are underpinned by a practical tool-kit to help all parties involved in the decision-making process

Guidance from other organisations

Skills for Care

Violence against social care and support staff - The report explores research into the problem of violence against staff in social care in 2012. Three key issues were examined, the trends and current prevalence of violence against social care and support staff; guidance and monitoring procedures employers are using to record violence incidents; and what the sector can learn from the NHS in response to violence against staff

Guidance on restrictive practices including new guidance on workforce development and seeking to minimise the use of restrictive practices in health and social care - 'A positive and proactive workforce'.

Department of Health

The Department of Health have published advice for staff on the use of restrictive interventions for patients with difficult behaviour. 'Positive and Proactive Care: reducing the need for restrictive interventions' provides guidance for adult health and social care staff to develop a culture where restrictive interventions are only ever used as a last resort.

European Social Partners Agreement

Preventing Workplace Harassment and Violence – joint guidance implementing a European social partners’ agreement. This guidance has been drawn up by the UK organisations that are represented in EU Social Dialogue in order to implement the European level framework agreement. It is supported by the Health and Safety Executive (HSE), the Department for Business, Innovation and Skills (BIS), and the Advisory, Conciliation and Arbitration Service (ACAS). It is designed for use by both employers and workers. The intention is to provide a guide to the European agreement, practical advice on dealing with harassment and violence at work, and to draw together in one place for the first time information on the key relevant pieces of legislation and support available in the UK.

Health, Safety and Wellbeing Partnership Group (HSWPG) - formerly POSHH

The Health, Safety and Wellbeing Partnership Group is the health and safety sub group of the NHS Staff Council. The purpose of the group is to raise standards of health, safety and wellbeing in healthcare organisations and to promote best practice across both the NHS and the Independent sector.

HSWPG has a sub-group set up to take forward in partnership an agreed programme of action on violence and aggression. In partnership with NHS Protect, they have produced two publications on improving the safety of lone workers.

NHS Protect (previously NHS Security Management Service)

NHS Protect leads on work to identify and tackle crime across the health service. The aim is to protect NHS staff and resources from activities that would otherwise undermine their effectiveness and their ability to meet the needs of patients and professionals.

NHS Protect produces a range of research and guidance, including:

Meeting needs and reducing distress: Guidance for the prevention and management of clinically related challenging behaviour in NHS settings. The guidance has a dedicated website which provides further information.

Not Alone: A guide for the better protection of lone workers in the NHS' - The guidance is designed to assist NHS organisations develop local policies and procedures to assess and minimise the risks faced by those that work alone, and meet their health and safety responsibilities in relation to lone working.

Updated 2017-11-29