Did the Pandemic Stamp Out Nurse Bullying?
Most clinical leaders know the adage, “Nurses eat their young,” and in some cases, this still rings true—even during something as unprecedented as the pandemic.
“Unfortunately, I would say yes, nurse bullying is still in place and has been for decades,” Janet Tomcavage, MSN, RN, executive vice president and chief nurse executive at Danville, Pa.-based Geisinger, told Becker’s. “In many ways, the pandemic brought team members together. But there is still inappropriate, unwanted behavior that offends nurses and causes distress.”
Addressing unwanted behaviors in the workplace is about more than just professionalism. These behaviors can have detrimental effects on team members’ psychological safety and care quality.
These behaviors can also contribute to nurse burnout and turnover, which is problematic considering the health system is already facing a nursing shortage.
“If we can eradicate unprofessional behavior, we should see a significant increase in our quality and safety for patients,” said Tomcavage. “We should also see a significant impact on turnover and retention and professional and personal fulfillment in a job that is demanding but also so rewarding.”