Violence against female student nurses in the workplace

Patricia A Hinchberger
Nursing Forum 2009, 44 (1): 37-46
Violence, harassment, and bullying in the workplace are not new phenomena. However, the growing epidemic of violence in the health sector workplace is raising great concern among workers, employers, and governmental agencies across Australia, Canada, the United Kingdom, and the United States. National and international literature reveals that the prevalence of violence experienced by graduate and undergraduate female nursing students in the college and workplace settings is largely unknown. Moreover, the prevalence of violence is now recognized as a major health priority by the World Health Organization, the International Council of Nurses, and Public Services International. Even so, the number of nursing personnel affected by this problem continues to rise. A modified self-report online survey was used to ascertain the level of violence experienced by nursing students in their clinical placements. One hundred percent of those surveyed had experienced some type of workplace violence and the perpetrators were most often other staff members followed closely by patients. The American Association of Colleges of Nursing Position Statement recommends that all faculty prepare nurses to recognize and prevent all forms of violence in the workplace. This research seeks to develop practical approaches to better understand and prevent this global public health issue.

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