Risk factors for occupational violence and aggression in the emergency department

Pouryahya P, Lim A. Risk factors for occupational violence and aggression in the emergency department. Med Emergency, MJEM 2020; 28:29-32.

DOI: 10.26738/MJEM.2017/MJEM28.2020/PP.OAE.060320

Key words: emergency department, emergency services, occupational aggresion, occupational violence

  • Authors’ affiliation
  • Article history / info
  • Conflict of interest statement

Corresponding author: Pourya Pouryahya, MD

Emergency department, Casey hospital

62 Kangan drive, Berwick, Victoria 3806, Australia

email: pourya.pouryahya@monashhealth.org

Pouryahya P, MD1,2,4, Lim A, MBA2,3,4

1. Casey hospital, Emergency Department, Program of Emergency Medicine, Monash Health, Victoria

2. Monash Emergency Research Collaborative, School of Clinical Sciences, Monash Health, Monash University, Victoria

3. Monash Medical Centre, Emergency Department, Program of Emergency Medicine, Monash Health, Victoria

4. Faculty of Medicine, Nursing and Health Sciences, Monash University, Victoria

Category: Original article

Received: Dec. 04, 2019

Revised: Feb. 06, 2020

Accepted: Mar. 06, 2020

There is no conflict of interest to declare

ABSTRACT

Objective: To examine shift characteristics that increase the risk of occupational violence and aggression.

Methods: This study was a secondary analysis of survey results obtained from ‘Violence and abuse against staff in the emergency department, a descriptive analysis of a two-centre staff survey’. The purpose was to identify shift characteristics that were predictive of submitting a survey response describing a violent event. Univariable and multivariable binomial logistic regressions were used to identify significant predictors. Aggregated data from phase I findings was used to calculate odds ratios (OR) for each day of the week.

Results: The adjusted OR of experiencing violence if the respondent was a nurse was OR 2.92 [95% confidence interval (CI) 1.50, 6.00], p < 0.01. There was a higher risk of violence on post meridiem (PM) (OR 2.63 [95% CI 1.45, 4.83, p < 0.01) and night shifts (OR 2.65 [95% CI 1.51,4.71], p < 0.001). Saturday was the only day of the week identified as a significant risk factor (OR 4.92 [95% CI 1.60,18.13], p = 0.002).

Conclusions: Based on this cohort of emergency workers, the shift characteristics that were most predictive of submitting a survey describing a violent encounter were PM or night shifts, whether the health provider is a nurse, or whether the shift was performed on a Saturday.

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