Workplace violence and bullying faced by health care personnel at the emergency department of a tertiary care hospital of Karachi, Pakistan: A cross-sectional study

Document Type



School of Nursing and Midwifery, Pakistan; Emergency Medicine


Introduction: The emergency department is the most affected by physical and verbal abuse and bullying in health care. Violence against health care workers not only affects their safety, but also their performance and motivation. This study aimed to determine the prevalence and associated determinants of violence against health care personnel.
Methods: A cross-sectional study design was used with 182 health care personnel at the emergency department tertiary care hospital of Karachi, Pakistan. Data were collected through a questionnaire comprised of 2 sections: (1) demographic questions and (2) statements to identify the prevalence of workplace violence and bullying among health care personnel. Nonprobability purposive sampling was used for recruitment. Binary logistic regression was used to identify the prevalence and determinants of violence and bullying.
Results: Most participants were younger than 40 years of age (n = 106, 58.2%). Participants were mainly nurses (n = 105, 57.7%) and physicians (n = 31, 17.0%). Participants reported experiencing sexual abuse (n = 5, 2.7%), physical violence (n = 30, 16.50%), verbal abuse (n = 107, 58.8%), and bullying (n = 49, 26.9%). The odds of experiencing physical violence were 3.7 times greater (confidence interval = 1.6-9.2) when there was not a procedure for reporting workplace violence compared to when there was a procedure.
Discussion: Attention is required to identify the prevalence of workplace violence. Creating effective policies and procedures for a reporting system would potentially lead to lowering violence rates and positively impacting health care workers' well-being.

Publication (Name of Journal)

Journal of Emergency Nursing