As part of our new campaign to help reduce violence and aggression and keep our hospitals safe, we are encouraging everyone to take a moment and think about what others may be going through.
Paediatric community nurse, Mile End Hospital
“I’ve been lucky that I haven’t had too much violence directed towards me at work, but there certainly is a large amount of aggression.
We’re here to provide good care to our patients and because we care. You should never be scared to come to work, or worried about what you’ll have to deal with.
In my first year of qualifying I was looking after a three year old child post-surgery. It was my job to try and encourage her to get out of bed and that’s when the child’s father became irate with me. The child’s father tried to restrain me by pressing firmly on my hands and was shouting at me.
It was very intimidating as I was only in my first year and I remember after the incident happened, going to the toilet to cry because I’d been so upset by it.
It was a pivotal moment for me, to recognise that I will never let a patient or parent make me cry again by shouting or being aggressive.
Since that incident I have been fortunate enough not to experience physical aggression from a patient or parent, but it’s always stuck with me as how people can treat you.
I do believe there has been an increase in how badly parents speak to staff, because they forget there’s a person behind the role. They see you as someone who is only providing a service.
It can be really frustrating, but I am lucky that the experience taught me to be calm and strong, otherwise it will get to you and really get you down.
As clinicians, no one should be able to make you feel bad for doing your job. But it’s important to remember that most patient’s parents just want to know that someone is listening to them.”