Saf Health Work.  2016 Jun;7(2):97-101. 10.1016/j.shaw.2015.11.002.

Workplace Violence and Safety Issues in Long-Term Medical Care Facilities: Nurses' Perspectives

Affiliations
  • 1Department of Built Environment (Environmental Health and Occupational Safety), North Carolina Agricultural and Technical State University, Greensboro, NC, USA. bkfasany@ncat.edu

Abstract

BACKGROUND
Workplace violence (WPV) is becoming an issue that needs immediate attention in the United States, especially during this period as more states are adopting the "stand your ground laws to promote worker protection." This study was conducted to investigate how WPV has contributed to an unsafe environment for nurses and nursing assistants who work in long-term medical care facilities.
METHODS
A structure questionnaire was used to collect data for the study. Three facilities were sampled and 80 nurses and certified nursing assistants participated in the study. Ninety-two percent (n = 74) were female and 8% (n = 6) were male. Approximately 62% were black or African American, approximately 33% were Caucasians, and only 2% were from other ethnicities.
RESULTS
We found that 65% of the participants had experienced WPV while 41% believed that management shows little or no concern for their safety. Approximately 23% of respondents believed that reporting supervisor's WPV act is an unsafe action. In addition, 22% of those who reported that they have experienced WPV believed that the work environment is not safe to perform their duties. This significant difference in perception of workplace safety between those who had experienced WPV and those who had not was significant (t = 3.95, df = 158, p < 0.0001).
CONCLUSION
WPV is an epidemic problem that affects all health-care professionals. The findings of this study could help long-term medical care facilities' management identify the areas to focus on mitigating, controlling, and/or eliminating incidents of WPV.

Keyword

bullying; long-term medical care facility; safety; terrorism
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