Addressing interpersonal violence in Belgian hospitals

This project aims to sensitize and train health workers in Belgian hospitals in addressing, assisting and referring patients in interpersonal violence situations adequately. However, due to budgetary restrictions, the different project pathways had to be altered offering only advanced trainings and protocol development coaching to hospitals already included in the project in the previous year (2010-2011).
In 2012, 11 hospitals (4 Dutch speaking and 7 French speaking) participated in a three stage project.
We started with an in-situ situation- and needs analysis of every participating hospital. In collaboration with internal working groups, we assessed their policies regarding prevention, psychosocial aid, care and referral of patients and staff with violence experiences.

In a second phase, we organised an advanced course comprising of 24 to 28 hours of accredited training in which we build capacity on violence related topics as: detecting risks, signals and symptoms of different types of violence, communication skills on violence, adequate medical, psychosocial and legal care of patients and staff in violent situations, effective referral,  implementation of guidelines, tools and procedures from a holistic approach, and simulation of specific violence protocols.
Finally, we assisted and coached the participating hospitals in the  development of their hospital specific protocols on interpersonal violence, intimate partner violence, sexual violence, child abuse and maltreatment, elderly abuse and maltreatment, and violence against staff.

Although the project was once again assessed by the hospitals as essential support on this topic and positively evaluated by the Federal Agency, it is still unsure whether continuation can be assured due to current budgetary restrictions at the federal governmental level.

Funding agencies

Federal government


ICRH Belgium;


Hospital St Luc Bouge Belgium Ghent University Hospital Belgium


December 01, 2011 - September 30, 2012

Project status

Project closed

Team members

Ms. Ines Keygnaert
Ms. An-Sofie Van Parys




Interpersonal violence