The Dark Side of Nursing


Nurses have one of the most dangerous jobs around. From assaults to verbal abuse, nurses need to be constantly on guard. View the infographic entitled “The Dark Side of Nursing”, detailing just how dangerous being a nurse can be, along with how nurses can protect themselves. It can be found at

Over 54% of nurses admit that they’ve experienced physical violence and/or verbal abuse. Over 95% of the time, patients are the perpetrators. The most common places for these injuries to take place is the psychiatric ward, emergency rooms, waiting rooms, and the geriatric units. From being yelled at to being choked and stabbed, nurses throw themselves in danger’s path to save lives. Eighty nine percent of nurses reporting verbal abuse have fallen victim to being sworn or cursed at, or yelled and shouted at. Sixty nine percent have been called names. The nurses reporting physical abuse most commonly reported being grabbed or pulled on, at 48.3%. Over 41% reported being punched or slapped.

Being aware is the key to remaining safe for nurses. They should always watch for impending violence, such as threatening body language or signs of drug or alcohol use. It’s important to stay calm and remain in control. Evaluate every situation for potential violence, and don’t isolate yourself or get into an area without a clear exit.

Hospitals should also do their best to protect employees by providing panic buttons in every room, call code pseudonyms, an enclosed nursing station, well-lit areas, security signs, and locked entries.

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