Risk tools for the prediction of violence: ‘VRAG, HCR-20, PCL-R’



Accessible summary

  • This paper compare between three tools used in the assessment of patients for the violence risk.
  • The nurses can use this tools to predict the violent patient so that they can protect themselves and the other patients.
  • The comparison between this three tools gives the health care provider the ability to choose the best tool that is suitable to situations.


Many instruments have been introduced as measures of violence risk prediction. Studies on risk assessment displayed two major approaches – clinical risk evaluation and actuarial measures – and three tools were mostly used: (1) Violence Risk Appraisal Guide, (2) Historical-Clinical-Risk-20 item scale and (3) Psychopathy Checklist-Revised. Although these tools are commonly used in clinical practice, they differ in their uses, benefits and limitations, and their ability to predict future violence. Subsequently, this paper aim to provide the readers an in-depth description that specifies these aspects, as well as a comparison of these tools in order to help readers decide which tool to use.