Author research interest: The authors' research interests primarily centre on healthcare management, part of which involves a focus on workplace aggression (bullying and violence) across various occupational groups, most notably nursing.
Nurses’ Work-Life Experiences
Psychological consequences of bullying for hospital and aged care nurses
Version of Record online: 17 JUL 2012
© 2012 The Authors. International Nursing Review © 2012 International Council of Nurses
International Nursing Review
Volume 59, Issue 4, pages 539–546, December 2012
How to Cite
Rodwell, J. and Demir, D. (2012), Psychological consequences of bullying for hospital and aged care nurses. International Nursing Review, 59: 539–546. doi: 10.1111/j.1466-7657.2012.01018.x
Conflict of interest statement: The authors declare no conflict of interest.
- Issue online: 8 NOV 2012
- Version of Record online: 17 JUL 2012
- Aged Care;
- Psychological Distress
RODWELL J. & DEMIR D. (2012) Psychological consequences of bullying for hospital and aged care nurses. International Nursing Review
Aim: This study examines the psychological consequences of workplace bullying by negative affectivity (NA) and demographics for hospital and aged care nurses.
Introduction/Background: Nurses are particularly vulnerable to workplace bullying, with suggestions that oppressed group behaviours may play a role. Bullying is a potent stressor that can negatively impact psychological well-being, which, with NA and demographics, may be important in understanding the consequences of nurse bullying. Such factors are yet to be examined together across different nursing contexts.
Methods: A cross-sectional survey was conducted across hospital and aged care nurses working within a medium to large Australian healthcare organization in October 2009. The sample comprised 233 (29.1%) hospital and 208 (43.8%) aged care nurses. Analyses of covariance were used to evaluate the data.
Results: For hospital nurses, psychological distress was noted as an impact of bullying, while depression was the impact for aged care nurses. Full-time aged care nurses reporting bullying had higher psychological distress scores, compared with part-time workers in the same area. NA was a significant covariate across both outcomes in both contexts.
Discussion/Conclusion: This study demonstrates that bullying has detrimental consequences for the mental health of nurses in both hospital and aged care contexts. The results support the suggestion that nurses are an oppressed group at high risk of bullying, confirm the intrinsic nature of NA to the bullying process, and highlight the importance of employment type for aged care nurses. Given the shortage of nurses, managers need to give higher priority to addressing workplace bullying and implementing zero tolerance policies.