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  1. Autrey, Pamela S. PhD, RN
  2. Howard, Jack L. PhD
  3. Wech, Barbara A. PhD


OBJECTIVE: This research seeks to identify the sources of, reactions to, and tactics that nurses use to address aggression in the workplace.


BACKGROUND: Models explaining aggression have limitations and do not address the tactics that victims use when confronted with aggression.


METHODS: Personal interviews were conducted with 47 RNs at a large university hospital. Grounded theory techniques were used in the analysis.


RESULTS: Tactics varied by the type of perpetrator being addressed. Coworkers were likely to be the aggressor, with patient care technicians being the most commonly identified aggressor toward RNs.


CONCLUSIONS: Knowing the sources, reactions, and tactics used in response to aggression is necessary to support the development of preventive and responsive strategies from individual and organizational perspectives.