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Prevalence of medical workplace violence and the shortage of secondary and tertiary interventions among healthcare workers in China
  1. Brian J Hall1,2,
  2. Peng Xiong1,
  3. Kay Chang1,
  4. Ming Yin1,
  5. Xin-ru Sui1
  1. 1 Department of Psychology, Global and Community Mental Health Research Group, The University of Macau, Macao (SAR), China
  2. 2 Department of Health, Behavior and Society, Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health, Baltimore, Maryland, USA
  1. Correspondence to Dr Brian J Hall, Global and Community Mental Health Research Group, Department of Psychology, The University of Macau, Macau E21-3040, China; brianhall{at}; bhall31{at}


Medical workplace violence (MWV) is a key occupational hazard facing medical professionals worldwide. MWV involves incident where medical staff are abused, threatened and assaulted. MWV affects the health and well-being of medical staff exposed, causes significant erosion of patient–physician trust and leads to poorer health outcomes for patients. In China, the prevalence of MWV appears to be rising. Laws were enacted to keep medical staff safe, but clear surveillance and enforcement is needed to improve the condition. In the current essay, we conducted a systematic literature review to identify secondary and tertiary prevention programmes designed to ameliorate psychological suffering following MWV. This review identified only 10 published studies. A critical gap in the intervention literature exists with regard to addressing the public health burden of MWV.

  • violence
  • workplace
  • work stress

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  • Contributors BJH designed the study and wrote the essay. PX assisted in the conduct of the literature review and drafting the essay. KC, X-S and MY assisted with the literature review and provided assistance in drafting the essay.

  • Funding This research received no specific grant from any funding agency in the public, commercial or not-for-profit sectors.

  • Competing interests None declared.

  • Patient consent Not required.

  • Provenance and peer review Commissioned; externally peer reviewed.