The literature regarding the increased risk of violence toward registered nurses and health care workers is plentiful; yet, data on prelicensure nursing student exposure to violent patient behaviors are limited and did not exist for the university's nursing program.
The purpose of this exploratory study was to examine nursing student exposure to patient aggression or violent behavior in a prelicensure nursing program in the Midwestern United States.
The research design was an exploratory study using surveys completed by nursing students in their junior and senior years.
Almost 74% of male students and 85% of female students experienced some form of verbal aggression from their patients, with a statistically significant difference between male and female nursing students on their exposure to sexual harassment. Students also experienced extreme emotions and feelings.
The survey results reveal nursing students are exposed to patient aggression or violent behavior, do not feel prepared to manage these situations, and desire faculty mentoring.