How common is Work Violence? - page 2

I hear alot of nurses being attacked by patients personally i dont know any who have been attacked. I volunteer in the ER and i never seen anybody get physically assaulted. I wanna be a ER RN so... Read More

  1. by   IMustBeCrazy
    Patients, like children, will push the limits as long as there are no repercussions. I agree about dialing 911 (with certain exceptions which *I* will decide), at least I will have a police report to back me up.
  2. by   atainey
    For those of you interested in "calling 911" etc... The protocol is to call your local police department's non-emergency line, and state that you need an officer to come take a report for assault.

    I currently work at a residential treatment center for adolescents, and we have occasional physical assaults. Formally reporting them has become a very effective way to cut down on attacks, when the patients realize they must pay consequences for their actions.

    So list those local police numbers in a visible place, and don't hesitate to call!
  3. by   sunflowermist
    You are absolutely right!
    I was the victim of an attack about a week ago by and alert and oriented pt. He was totally out of control until the police walked into his room -at that moment he became very calm and quiet! He acknowledged that he should not have hit me and apologized to the police officer (not to me). I did indeed file charges and am waiting to go to court on this. Nurses seem to be "fair game" for these bullies and unfortunately administration does NOTHING to prevent or control this type of behavior. In fact I believe that this type of behavior is promoted by the motto that "THE CUSTOMER IS ALWAYS RIGHT" Whoever came up with this type of moronic thinking? Of course the customer, patient, client is not always right, how ridiculous this is!
    To date no one from administration has even acknowledged that I was injured or that I was attacked, perhaps if it were their mother or their sister they would be more inclined to do something about it!
    I would really love to see all hospitals adopt a ZERO TOLERANCE POLICY towards workplace violence be it verbal or physical.
    Until nurses start acting then nothing is going to be done about it. I know of several other nurses that have been hit, spit at, cursed at, kicked, slapped etc. all by alert and oriented people and they have done nothing for fear of losing their jobs etc.Nurses.......wake up!!!! Administrators wake up!!




    Quote from atainey
    For those of you interested in "calling 911" etc... The protocol is to call your local police department's non-emergency line, and state that you need an officer to come take a report for assault.

    I currently work at a residential treatment center for adolescents, and we have occasional physical assaults. Formally reporting them has become a very effective way to cut down on attacks, when the patients realize they must pay consequences for their actions.

    So list those local police numbers in a visible place, and don't hesitate to call!
  4. by   dazzle256
    Quote from sunflowermist
    You are absolutely right!
    I was the victim of an attack about a week ago by and alert and oriented pt. He was totally out of control until the police walked into his room -at that moment he became very calm and quiet! He acknowledged that he should not have hit me and apologized to the police officer (not to me). I did indeed file charges and am waiting to go to court on this. Nurses seem to be "fair game" for these bullies and unfortunately administration does NOTHING to prevent or control this type of behavior. In fact I believe that this type of behavior is promoted by the motto that "THE CUSTOMER IS ALWAYS RIGHT" Whoever came up with this type of moronic thinking? Of course the customer, patient, client is not always right, how ridiculous this is!
    To date no one from administration has even acknowledged that I was injured or that I was attacked, perhaps if it were their mother or their sister they would be more inclined to do something about it!
    I would really love to see all hospitals adopt a ZERO TOLERANCE POLICY towards workplace violence be it verbal or physical.
    Until nurses start acting then nothing is going to be done about it. I know of several other nurses that have been hit, spit at, cursed at, kicked, slapped etc. all by alert and oriented people and they have done nothing for fear of losing their jobs etc.Nurses.......wake up!!!! Administrators wake up!!
    Please keep us posted of the outcome of this. I thought I heard somewhere that assaulted a healthcare worker the punishment is doubled. It is sad though that the management didn't come to your defense. I agree there should be a zero tolerance policy for alert and oriented patients.
  5. by   RN4NICU
    Quote from sunflowermist
    You are absolutely right!
    I was the victim of an attack about a week ago by and alert and oriented pt. He was totally out of control until the police walked into his room -at that moment he became very calm and quiet! He acknowledged that he should not have hit me and apologized to the police officer (not to me). I did indeed file charges and am waiting to go to court on this. Nurses seem to be "fair game" for these bullies and unfortunately administration does NOTHING to prevent or control this type of behavior. In fact I believe that this type of behavior is promoted by the motto that "THE CUSTOMER IS ALWAYS RIGHT" Whoever came up with this type of moronic thinking? Of course the customer, patient, client is not always right, how ridiculous this is!
    To date no one from administration has even acknowledged that I was injured or that I was attacked, perhaps if it were their mother or their sister they would be more inclined to do something about it!
    I would really love to see all hospitals adopt a ZERO TOLERANCE POLICY towards workplace violence be it verbal or physical.
    Until nurses start acting then nothing is going to be done about it. I know of several other nurses that have been hit, spit at, cursed at, kicked, slapped etc. all by alert and oriented people and they have done nothing for fear of losing their jobs etc.Nurses.......wake up!!!! Administrators wake up!!
    Perhaps if they were held liable for putting your safety at risk they would be more inclined to do something about it. :angryfire

    Any employer that would threaten to terminate nurses who take legal action against violent patients would be free to TAKE the job and STICK IT in their orfice of choice as far as this nurse is concerned. I won't work where my safety is of no consequence.

    Absolutely ZERO TOLERANCE - Call the police.
  6. by   berry
    A stiff chop to the throat will slow any attacker, think I'm a **hole whatever if its them or me i will take a pt out in an instance. It it complete crap for anybody to be attacked at work. I have NO 2nd thought hitting a pt in self defense. Any of you who put up with physical abuse have you ever seen what happens if a client at a bar acts up and some bouncers get a hold of them or better yet a suspect who strikes a officer of the law talk about a beat down. I will call a "code 1" as instructed in hospital policy but if someone (pt, doc. coworker whatever) makes an agressive move at me I feel within my rights to take action and defend my self.
  7. by   Dinith88
    I cant quite remember the source, but i once read that nurses working alzheimers wards in LTC were the most exposed to violence and/or violence related injury. Even more often than in-patient Psych-units.
  8. by   P_RN
    Helping a second shift nurse put restraints on her patient a very confused man(w/MD order of course) and he got his left leg out and kicked me in the left cheekbone. Fractured it, LOC , raccoon eye, concussion. The other nurses had to drag my "body" out by my ankles because the guy was ripping the telephone receiver and hitting anyone and anything he could get to. I spent about 4 hours in the ER totally disoriented. Police came (My BIL ) and I gave a report. Nothing ever happened because he was a secret alcoholic and had lied about no alcohol. He was "not responsible for his actions".

    That's the physical kind. Emotional kind....well lets say that hurts at least as badly. And that hurt lasts longer than the physical.
  9. by   laughing weasel
    We have been to three clinicals and have had two students assaulted one (me) by an eighty-five year old dementia patient and the other by a forty-something patient. Is this par for the course? It takes a lot of restraint not to break someone who is attacking you. I have never been one who believes in defense. However, the person did not know what he was doing. If an oriented patient attacks a fellow nurse or me what measures am I allowed to take in their defense?
  10. by   Genista
    I too have had patients try to bite and kick me, punch me etc. Usually these are demented patients. The scariest threat, however was from a family member of a patient. This woman was threatening to "punch me out" in the hallway. I have never seen someone with so much hate in their eyes. She basically hated all the staff, and I think that day I was the unlucky one to meet her when she was at her breaking point. She seemed very unstable, and I was nervous about running into her for quite some time afterward.
  11. by   RN4NICU
    Quote from kona2
    I too have had patients try to bite and kick me, punch me etc. Usually these are demented patients. The scariest threat, however was from a family member of a patient. This woman was threatening to "punch me out" in the hallway. I have never seen someone with so much hate in their eyes. She basically hated all the staff, and I think that day I was the unlucky one to meet her when she was at her breaking point. She seemed very unstable, and I was nervous about running into her for quite some time afterward.
    Family members do not just automatically have the unquestionable right to be there. Any time a visitor threatens the staff, a police report should be filed and a restraining order sought. You never know when an unstable wacko is going to snap - no sense putting yourselves at risk.
  12. by   teeituptom
    Its those chemically challenged patients that get me

    16 yo under alcohol, I got kicked in the mouth, 3 teeth missing

    33 yo fem intox, bit me lt forearm a silver dollar sized chunk of flesh and swallowed it. Had to let heal open and slowly

    2 diff times cracked ribs


    the worse was a needle stick due to an obnoxious drunk with HIV and Hep C, Fortunaelt a ye later and still negative
  13. by   Ruby Vee
    I've been hit, kicked, punched, choked and threatened by patients and by family members. (There was the guy who wanted to solve all of his wife's problems with a 9mm! He was arrested at midnight, and back in his wife's room visiting by 6AM. Only now he was pissed at the STAFF!)

    I've also been shoved across the room into a table by my boss . . . she had an anger management problem. I wanted to pursue the matter, but my witness, a surgery fellow unfortunately died a week later. He had verbally reported what happened, but hadn't put it into writing yet. So it was my word against hers. Nothing happened, of course.

    I've seen a fellow nurse slammed in the face with a chart by an attending whose response was "I didn't MEAN to hit her. She just got in my way."

    I've seen a nurse punched by an attending who then claimed, "No matter what he says, I didn't hit him."

    I saw a surgeon throw contaminated sharps at a fellow nurse, hitting him in the chest. The surgeon claims that Dan just got in his way.

    I saw a surgeon haul off to hit a pulmonologist, instead decking the nurse who was trying to separate the two of them. No one pressed charges.

    I worked with an agency nurse who used to be the L & D manager. One day one of the OBs decked one of her staff, and she (the manager) called the police. The OB is still there, but the staff member now sells insurance and the manager works agency . . . .

    Years ago, a surgeon threw a (full) bedpan down a flight of stairs at my preceptor.

    A cardiologist jammed a bicarb needle clear through my hand (claimed it was an accident). Actually, it may have been . . . .

    And I dislocated a resident's shoulder. That one was an accident. He had a grand mal seizure while I was talking to him, and I grabbed for his arm as he went down. He didn't hit his head, but the dislocation was painful. (We're talking house staff, not LTC residents here.)

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