Physical Violence Against Nurses - page 2

by TheCommuter Asst. Admin

7,537 Views | 18 Comments

Physical violence is an explosive epidemic, especially in hospitals and other healthcare settings. Workplace violence can be any act of physical violence, threats of physical violence, harassment, intimidation, or other... Read More


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    I have been fortunate so far to have dodged a lot of physical assault on to me and have jumped out of the way. But there was an incident with a little old lady who hit, kicked, tore shirts of the CNA's. At that time I had called the DON and she allowed me to call and take her on a psych hold. But then I had a DON hang up on me when I reported that the patient was stricking staff and throw something across the room in attemp to hit me with it. Before she hung up on me she said how much damage can a little old lady do. I have heard of discouragement in pressing charges when assaulted. I once believed that if a patient assaulted me and they were not of sound mind that there was nothing I could do about that. That it was basically their right and I didn't have any recourse. That was told to me by a DON also. Found out later anyone can press charges but the great white doors of the institution is not going to save/help you.
    RoseRyan and lindarn like this.
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    I am not a nurse yet and don't start nursing school until August. I am a CNA and have been assaulted, scratched, groped, spit on you name it while working in a LTC even been cussed out by family members for reasons that I don't know. Each time administration just asked if I was fine and that was pretty much it. It seems like assaults against staff aren't taken seriously. I've now been working as a CNA in a psych facility for a yr now and fortunately I haven't been assaulted. I just hope that facilities do more for health care workers when they are assaulted.
    lindarn likes this.
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    Wow! I am lucky where I work in Australia. My hospital has a fantastic security service that respond to code greys ie where a pt is threatening staff in some way. If a pt is escalated to the hospital mgt they will often come and observe the pt when this is happening so that we can try to organize discharge.
    I had one pt constantly abuse staff verbally and in general be horrible. The after hours manager observed him threatening me and his nurse. (i was in chatge). He then took a photo of me and said he was sending it to his mate who was going to come and kill me.
    The after hours manager heard thus and called the cops as security took his phone from him. The police arrived and his was cautioned and discharged and the picture deleted by the police. I took an AVO out on him in order to prevent him returning to my ward.
    lindarn likes this.
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    Folks, we are NOT paid to get hurt. Unless you've got meaningful security (as opposed to some guys over 80 that you'd worry they'd fall and break a hip), call 911. Tell administration they were threatening other patients and you didn't want that to be in the paper. They don't care about us, so make it about something they do care about -- bad publicity if a visitor or other patient's injured.
    lindarn likes this.
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    Management would not be so quick to minimize assaults if they were the ones being attacked. But they're not. They're in their offices considering the reputation of the hospital, instead of the well being of their staff.
    RoseRyan and lindarn like this.
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    Quote from imintrouble
    Management would not be so quick to minimize assaults if they were the ones being attacked. But they're not. They're in their offices considering the reputation of the hospital, instead of the well being of their staff.
    After all, many (if not most) people in upper management view their hourly workers as replaceable cogs in a revenue-generating machine.

    It's so sad and disgusting that profits are placed ahead of peoples' well-being.
    imintrouble and RoseRyan like this.
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    We had a consistantly violent resident, sent 3 employees to the hospital, and we requested he be moved to a State psych facility. Finally the DNS walked in his room one day and he broke her nose. Needless to say he was gone that night. We always joked that it takes a boss getting their ass handed to them for anything to happen. Guess we were right.
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    Quote from julianp
    We had a consistantly violent resident, sent 3 employees to the hospital, and we requested he be moved to a State psych facility. Finally the DNS walked in his room one day and he broke her nose. Needless to say he was gone that night. We always joked that it takes a boss getting their ass handed to them for anything to happen. Guess we were right.
    I, too, know that situations occurred where I worked in which the transfer out happened right after rowdy pts assaulted management.

    It is a sad commentary on the state of healthcare when tolerance of violence against staff is allowed by the Powers That Be. Another one of healthcare's dirty little secrets well kept. (Just read another post somewhere on AN today that talked about the 'dirty little secrets' so I'm acknowledging another author somewhere here on AN.)
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    i wonder how many assaults happen that aren't reported?

    i had a friend who had taken a CNA class with me. she had been a CNA before, but let her certification expire. she was so friendly and you could tell she was really in it for the right reasons.

    she sent me a text one night and was frantic because a patient punched her....and the charge nurse wanted her to go to employee health immediately for an exam + urine drug screen. she said she hadn't smoked marijuana in years, but a week prior to the assault she was with some friends and decide to participate so she "took a few hits." not the wisest decision, but we're all human, and besides.....what in the heck does that have to do with getting punched by a patient?

    i'd be willing to bet there are plenty of assaults that go unreported for this very reason. it might not be marijuana, but lortab or valium even if it's prescribed and wasn't taken on the job will show up in your system for a little while. so, you can either risk reporting the assault and losing your job....or just take the hit...literally.

    my friend is still in healthcare. actually, a doctor who observed her working at the hospital was so impressed with her "magnetic personality" and interaction with the staff and patients that he had one of his employee's call and offer her a job at his office that only employees LPNs. i'm not condoning that nurses use substances on the job whether they're legal or illegal, but the fact that a nurse has to be drug tested when assaulted by a patient is absurd IMO, and i'm sure it has an impact on the number of actual cases vs. reported cases of assaults.


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