The incidence and management of workplace violence among medical professionals in the United States: A methodological pilot study

Ashleigh Chinelo Oguagha, Jing Chen


This study aimed to investigate workplace violence (WPV) experienced by medical professionals in the United States as well as individual and managerial actions following violent episodes and further, predict estimators of WPV. A modified version of the Workplace Violence in the Health Sector: Country Case Studies Research Instruments Survey Questionnaire was used to assess the incidence and management of workplace violence experienced by healthcare workers. Medical personnel from two social aggregation websites were recruited to participate in an online survey. 226 valid questionnaires were received. 48.5\% and 76.1\% of respondents, respectively, experienced physical and psychological violence in the past year. Risk factors for violence included occupation, patient population, ethnicity, and higher levels of anxiety regarding violence in hospitals. Overall, 17.7\% of reported incidents were investigated, 52.4\% of cases saw no consequences meted out to perpetrators and 51.7\% of victims suffered from negative emotions or aftereffects following a violent episode. Only 30.1\% of victims formally reported their experience with violence. The prevalence of violence was high and medical professionals were negatively affected by violence; however, formal reporting of episodes was low and measures combating violence were inadequate. Harsher penalties for perpetrators of violence are needed and hospitals need to implement guidelines that track the management of violence. 

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Journal of Hospital Administration

ISSN 1927-6990(Print)   ISSN 1927-7008(Online)

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