PROactive: Identifying and Managing Violence in the Workplace

We would like to acknowledge that Alberta rests on the territories of Treaty 6, 7, and 8 and Metis Regions 1, 2, 3, 5 and 6.
This territory is home to many Indigenous Peoples, including the Blackfoot, Cree, Dene, Saulteaux, Ojibwe, Stoney Nakoda, Sioux, and Tsuut’ina Peoples, and the Metis Nations of Alberta and the Metis Settlements.


As a frontline clinician, did you ever feel inadequately prepared to respond to and manage workplace violence?

We wish to help all health workers feel safe in the clinical workplace. In fall 2020, the PROactive: Partners in Professionalism partnered with the University of Calgary Office of CME&PD to host a three-part webinar series entitled “Identifying and Managing Violence in the Workplace: Experiences and Strategies”. During the webinars, discussion happened around physician experiences of workplace violence, and context-appropriate strategies and tools for prevention and safe response. It was such a valuable conversation that we feel obligated to share the learning materials to a broader audience if you missed the live webinars. We hope you find them helpful.

There are text and audio clips of physician stories in this course. Please respect the physicians’ contribution to this education program. They have consented to sharing their stories for your personal learning use, and this information must not be shared beyond participants in this course.


After completing this course, you will be able to:

  • Recognize risk factors that contribute to violence in the workplace
  • Discuss strategies for responding to and de-escalating violence
  • Access local resources and support for physician safety and wellness
  • Prepare for joining the development of local violence prevention plan
  • Course navigation: Use the table of content in the ‘COURSE NAVIGATION’ widget of the program. In the main area of your screen, there are also ‘Previous Module/Topic’ and ‘Next Module/Topic’ icons at the bottom of each page.
  • Comment field: The comment field at the lower part of a page serves as discussion board for learners. You are encouraged to reflect on your learning and leave comments, as well as respond to other learners’ comments. Course team and faculty will also respond to learners’ questions in this field. Please be respectful and courteous, as if you were having a face-to-face discussion.
  • ‘RESUME LEARNING’: For the convenience of self-paced learning, you may exit from the middle of the course and come back later. When you login the e-learning portal again, click on ‘RESUME LEARNING’, and you will be redirected to where you left last time.
  • “MARK COMPLETE”: When you go through the course the first time, you will notice the “MARK COMPLETE” button in the pages. Make sure clicking on it when you reach the bottom of a page. After you complete the whole course, the “MARK COMPLETE” will not be there anymore when you revisit the content.

This one-credit-per-hour Self-Learning program meets the certification criteria of the College of Family Physicians of Canada and has been certified by the University of Calgary Office of Continuing Medical Education and Professional Development for up to 2.5 Mainpro+ credits.

This activity is an Accredited Self-Assessment Program (Section 3) as defined by the Maintenance of Certification Program of the Royal College of Physicians and Surgeons of Canada, and approved by the University of Calgary Office of Continuing Medical Education and Professional Development. You may claim a maximum of 2.5 hours (credits are automatically calculated).

You may also perform Linking Learning exercises around a question you ask yourself as a result of learning from this program at: Each completed Linking Learning exercise earns up to five Mainpro+ certified credits.

Accredited Royal College MOC Section 1 and Section 3 credits are eligible for certified Mainpro+ credits, up to a maximum of 50 credits per five-year cycle; any additional credits are eligible as non-certified Mainpro+ credits. MOC Section 3 accredited activities can be claimed at 3 credits per hour up to the cycle maximum.

Materials presented are in compliance with the University of Calgary Copyright Policy, Acceptable Use of Material Protected by Copyright.

Course materials are for individual use only and not to be distributed.

  • This course has received no commercial sponsorship support.
  • This course was co-developed with the PROactive: Partners in Professionalism and was planned to achieve scientific integrity, objectivity and balance.
  • Faculty disclosure
Faculty Credentials Disclosure Affiliation
Sharon Spicer MD, FRCPC, CCPE Nothing to Disclose Associate Chief Medical Officer, Physician Experience Alberta Health Services
Jeremy Beach MBBS MD FRCP(Edin) FFOM FRCP(C) FCCP FRCP(Lond) Nothing to Disclose Assistant Registrar, Physician Health, College of Physicians and Surgeons of Alberta (CPSA)
Annamarie Fuchs MN PMP ICD.D Nothing to Disclose PROactive Project Manager
Penny Smyth MD FRCPC Nothing to Disclose Associate Professor / Associate Dean, Professionalism Department of Medicine Division of Neurology, University of Alberta
Utkarsh Subnis  (CME Representative) PhD, MBBS Honoraria: Fresh Squeezed Ideas Inc., Digital Workplace Consultant; HAnalytics Solutions Inc, Former Employee Education Consultant, Cumming School of Medicine, University of Calgary

Sharron Spicer MD, FRCPC, CCPE (Chair)
Annamarie Fuchs MN PMP ICD.D
Penny Smyth MD FRCPC
Utkarsh Subnis PhD, MBBS (CME Representative)

This course has received an educational grant from the PROactive: Partners in Professionalism, which was funded by the College of Physicians and Surgeons of Alberta, Alberta Medical Association, and Alberta Health Services, and received in-kind support from the Health Quality Council of Alberta, University of Calgary and University of Alberta.