The exploding spark: workplace violence in an infectious disease hospital--a longitudinal study.
Biomed Res Int. 2013;2013:316358
Authors: Magnavita N
OBJECTIVES: Workplace violence (WV) is an important occupational hazard for healthcare workers (HCWs).
METHODS: A longitudinal study was carried out on HCWs from an infectious disease hospital. Work-related stress, anxiety, and depression were measured at baseline in 2003, and they were reassessed in 2005, along with the assaults that occurred in the previous year.
RESULTS: One-year prevalences of 6.2% and 13.9% were reported for physical and verbal aggressions, respectively. Perpetrators were mainly patients. The professional groups most frequently attacked were physicians, followed by nurses. Workers with job strain at baseline had a significant risk of being subject to aggression (OR 7.7; CI 95%, 3.3-17.9) in the following year. The relationship between job strain and subsequent WV remained significant even after correction for anxiety, depression, and other confounders. Conversely, experiencing WV was associated with a high risk of job strain and effort-reward imbalance in the following year. The final levels of anxiety and depression were predicted using regression models that included physical aggression among predictive variables.
CONCLUSIONS: WV is the spark that sets off a problematic work situation. Effective prevention of WV can only be achieved within the framework of an overall improvement in the quality of work.
PMID: 23936789 [PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]