Violence on health care workers
The Emergency Department (ED) is vulnerable for workplace violence, but little is known about this and its consequences. Objectives of this study were presence, characteristics and effects of violence from patients and visitors on health care workers in an Emergency Department (ED).
Materials and methods
This study was about the Accident and Emergency Department, S. Pertini Hospital, (ASL RMB, Rome, Italy). Data were collected from November 2014 to January 2015 on frequency and type of violent behavior in the past five years experienced by staff members and their level of stress by an ad hoc questionnaire for the evaluation of violent events in health activities (QVS) and a questionnaire on perceived work-related stress (QES).
Of the 58 eligible workers, 51 completed the interview. Health care workers were regularly exposed to violence with a consequent severe underreporting to work authorities and only a minor reporting to the police. A diffuse belief that workplace violence is a normal part of the work was also identified. Aggressors were usually patients or their relatives and were mainly males. Health care workers may suffer physical and emotional harm.
Emergency Department health care workers are at risk of experiencing workplace violence and should have specific training and support in the management of violent situations focused on early identification, communication strategies, and de-escalation techniques