As part of a nation-wide trend, the Louisiana legislature recently passed two bills focusing on workplace violence in the healthcare industry. Act No. 129 makes battery or assault of a healthcare professional a felony in Louisiana and expands the prior definition of “healthcare professional” to include security and other hospital staff. The law additionally creates a new criminal offense – the crime of unlawful disruption of the operation of a healthcare facility.
Act No. 461 creates new requirements for healthcare facilities to help reduce workplace violence. These requirements will include developing and maintaining a workplace violence prevention plan that requires in-person training for staff and mandates the reporting of all workplace violence to the appropriate authorities. Additionally, the new law puts into place protections for employees that report workplace violence to authorities.