Workplace bullying in the NHS: Prevalence, impact and barriers to reporting

Madeline Carter, Neill Thompson, Paul Crampton, Gill Morrow, Bryan Burford, Christopher Gray, Jan Illing

Research output: Contribution to specialist publicationArticle

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Abstract

WORKPLACE BULLYING is a persistent problem in the NHS (Hoel & Cooper, 2000; NHS staff surveys; Quine, 1999), with significant negative implications for individuals, teams and organisations (Illing et al., 2013; Salin, 2009). Definitions vary, but Einarsen et al. (1994) define bullying as ‘a situation where one or several individuals persistently over a period of time perceive themselves to be on the receiving end of negative actions from one or several persons, in a situation where the target of bullying has difficulty defending him or herself against these actions.’Bullying is regarded as ‘a significant source of social stress at work… and a more crippling and devastating problem for employees than all other work-related stress put together’ (Einarsen & Mikkelsen, 2003, p.127). It has been associated with poorer psychological health and well-being, including social isolation and maladjustment, depression, helplessness, anxiety, and despair (Leymann, 1990). Bullying is linked to higher levels of both psychosomatic and musculo–skeletal complaints (Einarsen & Raknes, 1997), substance abuse (Traweger et al, 2006; van Heughten, 2010), sleep problems (Lallukka et al., 2011; Vartia, 2001), suicide ideation (Brousse, 2008), and risk of cardiovascular disease (Kivimaki, 2003).
Original languageEnglish
Pages30-35
Number of pages6
VolumeSummer 2015
No.2
Specialist publicationBritish Psychological Society North East Branch Bulletin
Publication statusPublished - 2015

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