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Nurses and Bullying in the Workplace: A Resource Guide

In 2010, the ONA House of Delegates responded to an action report which drew attention to the widespread occurrence of nurse to nurse bullying in the workplace. While recognition of bullying between nurses and directed at nurses is acknowledged, many nurses have confirmed that they don’t know how to confront it if they are the focus or it is observed. Some nurses believe that bullying (and its impact) is just an accepted part of the workplace in health care.

Three factors have moved ONA to actively address the problem. First, The Joint Commission (TJC) now requires organizational policies that address disruptive behaviors. Secondly, studies began to emerge which identified the serious consequences of bullying. Lastly, nurses began to ask… "What can I do?”

These factors lead ONA to develop a multifaceted educational approach to nurse to nurse bullying. Continuing nursing education classes, webinars and a conference have been presented to nurses and other health care professionals. This resource guide was developed to put tools in the hands of nurses in all health care settings, organizations and schools of nursing. It was meant to empower nurses to respond to bullying they experience or observe, and to significantly reduce the occurrence of bullying behavior that affects nurses in the workplace.

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