Helping Injured Workers Since 1981

Reports show assaults against nurses are on the rise

On Behalf of | Aug 28, 2023 | Workers' Compensation

There are many ways that nurses can be injured on the job, most of which are purely accidental. A nurse could suffer from a needle stick, for instance, or get hurt in a slip-and-fall accident. Many nurses are hurt when they attempt to lift heavy patients and suffer serious back injuries as a result.

A disturbing trend in the last few years indicates that intentional assaults against nurses are actually on the rise. They’ve been growing much more common, and they include everything from insults to physical attacks. There have been numerous cases where people have thrown things at their nurses or attacked them during a disagreement.

Certainly, this is not the only occupation in which people can be injured by the actions of others. But it is a risk that people often do not consider, and these reports show that it is only becoming more and more of a hazard.

In fact, when the federal government compared injury rates in the nursing industry to employees who work in any other industry at all, they found out that nurses were five times as likely to be victimized by some form of workplace violence. Researchers also looked at the statistics from 2011 and found that there had been a 63% increase in violence against people in the medical community over the next seven years, ending in 2018. This rate increased again in 2020, as there was a lot of strain on the medical system. Roughly half of all nurses who were asked said that violence was on the rise.

Are nurses covered by workers’ comp?

Yes, nurses who are injured in these assaults are covered by workers’ comp. They are on the clock and performing their duties at the time of an attack. In that sense, being injured by a patient in the hospital is no different than being injured in any other fashion on the job, from a slip-and-fall accident to a needle stick. As a result, nurses who have been hurt on the job must be sure that they understand all of the legal options at their disposal in the event that they are harmed by a patient or by another’s act of aggression.