Council of Presidents of Medical Colleges and Australian College of Nursing condemn workplace violence

Australian College of Nursing

The Council of Presidents of Medical Colleges (CPMC) and Australian College of Nursing (ACN) strongly affirm all healthcare workers’ right to a safe workplace.

The CPMC and ACN are receiving a high number of reports from doctors and nurses who are experiencing harassment, aggression or violence at work, including from patients. This should never happen in any workplace in Australia.

Media reports have also highlighted this abuse nurses, doctors and other healthcare professionals are encountering in their daily work, including in vaccination hubs and community practice.

This is in addition to the COVID-19 pandemic, which is causing additional stress and anxiety for nurses and doctors, as well as their patients.

Adjunct Professor Kylie Ward FACN, ACN CEO is being overwhelmed by messages from nurses who are being verbally and physically abused.

“Nursing is Australia’s largest and most trusted healthcare profession. Nurses care for all of us when we’re sick, whether that’s with COVID or with any other healthcare needs. Why are we tolerating those who might save our lives to be abused or experience workplace violence? It’s got to stop. We all have a right to feel safe at work,” said Adjunct Professor Ward.

Ms Angela Magarry, CPMC CEO concurred.

“Our doctors are doing their best everyday for their patients, often under enormous pressure. Doctors work hard to protect patient safety and should be extended that same respect”, said Ms Magarry.

“This is the time to get behind our healthcare workers and support them, rather than abuse them,” added Dr Kym Jenkins, CPMC Chair.

The ACN and the CPMC are calling on all Australians to show respect and kindness for healthcare professionals who care for them and their families. We are all are entitled to a safe workplace.

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