Self Defense for
Healthcare Professionals

Medical Defensive Tactics (MD Tactics)

MD Tactics was created and designed by Dr. Uma Suryadevara and Sensei Jason Sorgi to teach basic self defense principles to psychiatry residents at the University of Florida. Before this program there was almost no self defense course that didn't involve striking an attacker. MD Tactics is uniquely designed to teach healthcare professionals self defense without harming a violent patient.

According to the US Bureau of Labor Statistics - healthcare workers suffer 50% of all assaults in the workplace. This is the highest of any occupation in the United States. Psychiatrists, emergency room staff, EMTs, and elder care workers are at particular risk due to patient violence. Although these occupations are the most dangerous, most healthcare workers receive no hands-on training in how to protect themselves from patient assaults. This leads to numerous injuries, resulting in thousands of missed days of work and millions of dollars in worker’s compensation claims. Assaults in the workplace without proper training also causes severe emotional trauma post incident. Many are unable to return to work even when their physical injuries have healed.

Why take this course?
According to an article in the Seattle Times on November 27th, 2015 – assaults on staff at Western State Psychiatric Hospital between 2010 and 2014 resulted in millions of dollars in medical costs and thousands of missed days of work.

• Injured employees missed 41,301 days of work during this period.
• Workers’ compensation insurance paid $6 million in wage and medical claims to injured hospital workers between Jan 2013 and Sept 2015.
• More than half of the 700 injures reported by nurses, psychiatric technicians, counselors, psychiatrists and other workers during that period were caused by violent patient assaults.
• A registered nurse assaulted by a patient suffered bruises to multiple parts of her body. She missed 966 days of work. Total claim: $488,740.

Many of these injuries and medical costs could have been avoided with simple defensive training.

Can you afford to not take this course?
Having hands-on self-defense knowledge will give healthcare professionals the ability to maintain composure during threatening situations. Maintaining composure allows the physician to make better verbal and physical response decisions to ensure the safety of the patient and self.
The result of the program is a win-win for all involved.
1. The healthcare professional gains confidence in dangerous situations which allows for better decisions.
2. Both the healthcare professional and patient greatly reduce their risk of potential injury.
3. The hospital reduces its risk to liability, workers missing days of work, excess medical costs, and worker’s compensation claims.
Where is this course taught?
The team will travel to your hospital or medical facility to teach the course. The course is designed to teach 10-15 individuals per session. The only requirements are a room to conduct the PowerPoint presentation and an open space to conduct the hands-on portion of the seminar. For those living in near the Gainesville, FL area – we can conduct this course at our facility.

Course Objectives


Specific skills needed for identifying and preventing violent behaviors in an inpatient psychiatric setting.


Common situations that could lead to patient violence.


Signs of an escalating situation.


The threat level while conducting an on-going assessment of patient, self and environment.

Take Control

With appropriate skills to better ensure the safety of the patient and self.


Part 1 - 90 Minute PowerPoint Presentation

• Statistical findings involved with patient on healthcare worker violence
• Most likely forms of attacks and injuries
• Proper de-escalation techniques
• Three part threat level describing visible signs of potential violence & proper response skills
• Video of actual patient attacks
• Step-by-step analysis of video and what should have been done to avoid the situation

Part 2 - 90 Minute Hands-On Section

• Proper defensive stance and footwork drills to avoid being thrown to ground
• Blocking techniques that deflect attacks
• Separation techniques that allows escape from attacker without striking
• Minimizing potential injury to the attacker

Our Ratings

"Healthcare professionals that have taken this course have rated it 4.87 out of 5 stars!"

Meet Our Team

Jason Sorgi

• B.S. in Mechanical Engineering, University of Florida
• President and Chief Instructor for Katsu Dojo Karate School for 20 yrs.
• State Karate Director for Sunshine State Games under Florida Sports Foundation
• Certified Coach with USA Karate under United States Olympic Committee

Uma Suryadevara

• Assistant Professor, University of Florida
• Program Director, Geriatric Psychiatry Fellowship Program, University of Florida
• Associate Program Director, Psychiatry Residency Program
• Fellowship at Stanford University
• Psychiatry Residency program, Michigan State University
• 2nd Degree Black Belt

How do I get more information?

You may contact Sensei Sorgi to get more information on the course, discuss pricing options, coordinate available dates, or ask any questions you may have. you may contact him by phone or email. Contact information is listed below.

Postal address: 4936 NW 39th Ave, Suite B, Gainesville, Florida - 32606

Phone: (352) 354-2860


MD Tactics is a subsidiary of Japan Karate-Do, LLC

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