Texas bill to protect healthcare workers from violence heads to Abbott's desk

A bill designed to help protect healthcare workers from violence is now on its way to Texas Gov. Greg Abbott's desk.

SB 240, also known as the Workplace Violence Prevention Act, passed unanimously in the Texas Senate and 122-26 in the Texas House. It is the first piece of legislation to pass and head to the governor's desk this legislative session.

The bill requires the establishment of a workplace violence prevention committee responsible for creating prevention policies and plans in every healthcare facility. Those plans and policies are also subject to annual reviews. 

It also includes annual violence prevention training and the creation of a system to report and investigate incidents of workplace violence. 


SB 240 also requires the facility at a minimum to offer immediate post-incident services, including medical treatment, to anyone involved. 

The bill and its companion HB 112 were authored by state Sen. Donna Campbell (R-New Braunfels) and state Rep. Donna Howard (D-Austin).

This is at least the second attempt to pass such legislation. In the 87th Legislature, state Rep. Howard had filed HB 326, which passed the House but did not pass the Senate.