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aggression, agitation, neuroscience, nurs*, violence



  1. Woon, Caroline


ABSTRACT: INTRODUCTION: The primary rationale for this study was to evaluate neuroscience registered nurses' (RNs') experience of violence and aggression internationally. The objectives were to determine how prevalent violence and aggression is in neuroscience nursing and the support and education provided. METHODS: Two online surveys were developed for neuroscience RN educators and RNs through SurveyMonkey. The questionnaires were distributed through RN organizations internationally in 2021. RESULTS: Two hundred seventy-two RNs responded to the survey. Most staff felt safe at work but had experienced some type of violence or aggression, with most experiencing verbal aggression. A variety of support existed for staff but lacked consistency, with some of the staff receiving more support from colleagues than their manager. Most RNs had received education in the management of violence and aggression, but some mentioned this was not specific to their neuroscience patient population, and most required further training. Thirty-one RN educators completed the survey, and the results were similar to those of the RN for education provision. Surprisingly, many neuroscience areas did not have a code system or personal alarms to alert staff to a violence or aggression emergency. CONCLUSION: Most RNs felt safe at work despite the high prevalence of violence and aggression experienced. Education was considered beneficial, but they desired more and further research into effective RN education. Effective support post incident needs to be determined. Protection for staff is paramount: few areas had code systems to raise an alarm for agitation, and few places of work had personal alarms that, if implemented, might enable a quicker response to prevent harm.