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Violence Towards Health Care Staff: Risk Factors, Aftereffects, Evaluation and Prevention

Bilge Annagür.

Cited by (18)

Abstract
There has been an increase in violence against physicians and healthcare staff in the health-care environment in recent years. The risk of violence remains stronger in people working in health institutions than the ones working in other businesses. Results of previous studies in this issue consistently confirmed the fact that violence in health care business is quite higher in frequency than the violence reported in other business environments. However it has also been reported that only attacks resulting in serious injuries have been considered as incidents of violence and other violence attempts are inclined not to be reported to legal authorities resulting in a much lower official rates. Not only patients but also the relatives of patients have been reported to expose violence against healthcare workers. Verbal violence were found to be more common than physical violence. Violence incidents happen most commonly in the emergency room settings, and psychiatric clinic settings. Health care staff exposed to violence usually suffer from anxiety and restlessness as psychological after-effects. Health care workers are not sufficiently trained about how to cope with acute and chronic effects of violent behavior. This issue should be handled within the framework of medical faculty and related schools’ curriculum. All health care staff including physicians should get sufficient education to take immediate actions on such incidents. Unfortunately in Turkey, there is no specific legal regulation related to violence towards health employees. The verbal attacks, injuries, assault and murder of health workers are subject to general legal provisions. Both rapid changes in health care services, facilities and shortcomings in legal regulations cause gaps in violence prevention and employing safety issues in hospitals and related health care facilities. Training employees and hospital managers, and considering the creation and application of present and future regulations remain as main prerequisites for ensuring a safe environment for healthcare staff.

Key words: Health Care Staff, Violence, Prevention



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