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Conveying caring: Nurse attributes to avert violence in the ED

Authors

  • Dr Lauretta Luck RN BA MA(Psy) PhD,

    Corresponding author
    1. Senior Lecturer, School of Nursing and Midwifery, College of Health and Science, University of Western Sydney, Sydney, New South Wales, Australia
    2. School of Nursing, Midwifery and Nutrition, James Cook University, Queensland Australia
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  • Dr Debra Jackson RN Comm.Nsg.Cert DipNsg BHScNsg MN(Ed) PhD,

    1. Professor of Nursing, School of Nursing and Midwifery, College of Health and Science, University of Western Sydney, Sydney, New South Wales, Australia
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  • Dr Kim Usher RN RPN RMRN DNE DHS BA MNursS PhD

    1. Professor of Nursing, School of Nursing, Midwifery and Nutrition, Faculty of Medicine, Health and Molecular Sciences, James Cook University, P.O. Box 6811, Cairns, QLD 4870
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Dr Lauretta Luck, Senior Lecturer, School of Nursing and Midwifery, College of Health and Science, University of Western Sydney, Locked Bag 1797, Penrith South DC, NSW 1797, Australia. Email: lauretta.luck@jcu.edu.au

Abstract

Violence towards nurses in Emergency Department's is a world wide problem that some contend is increasing in severity and frequency, despite the many strategies implemented to prevent violent events. This paper presents the findings of an instrumental case study in a busy rural Emergency Department. Twenty Registered Nurses participated in the study and data from 16 unstructured interviews, 13 semi-structured field interviews, and 290 h of participant observation were thematically analysed. In addition, 16 violent events were observed, recorded via a structured observation tool and analysed using frequency counts. Thematically there were five attributes rural emergency nurses were observed to use to avert, reduce and prevent violence. The five attributes were being safe, being available, being respectful, being supportive and being responsive. We argue that these attributes were embodied in the emergency nurses routine practice and their conceptualization of caring.

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