Violence against health care staff by patient’s visitor in general hospital in Greece: Possible causes and economic crisis


This study examined the types of violence experienced by physicians, nurses and nurse assistants in various departments by patients’ visitors. Few studies have focused on patients’ visitors’ violence against nurses or physicians in general hospitals and various departments in the beginning of economic crisis in Greece. A total of 250 health care staffphysicians, nurses, nurses’ assistants—took part in a questionnaire-based study. A majority of respondents had experienced some forms of violence (verbal, psychological, physical and sexual). The most frequently reported incident was verbal violence followed by psychological violence. Violation of visiting hours and long waiting periods were among the most common causes of violence. Associations were found between workplace violence and demographics and types of wards. Nurses identified economic crisis to be the major cause of violence. The most significant finding is the high rate of workplace violence caused by patients’ visitors due to economic crisis and the fact that we found no statistically significant differences in the prevalence of violence among different health professionals.

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Koukia, E. , Mangoulia, P. , Gonis, N. and Katostaras, T. (2013) Violence against health care staff by patient’s visitor in general hospital in Greece: Possible causes and economic crisis. Open Journal of Nursing, 3, 21-27. doi: 10.4236/ojn.2013.38A004.

Conflicts of Interest

The authors declare no conflicts of interest.


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