The Negative Impact of Nurse-Physician Disruptive Behavior on Patient Safety: A Review of the Literature

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Objective:To review what is known about the impact of nurse-physician disruptive behavior on patient safety to inform appropriate intervention programs to address this health care problem.Methods:A systematic review of the literature using the key words "disruptive physician behavior" and "physician verbal abuse" was conducted.Results:Ten articles were reviewed. All were descriptive in nature and used a nonexperimental approach to measure the incidence of disruptive behavior and/or verbal abuse in various health care settings via self-report surveys. All studies confirmed the alarming prevalence of disruptive behavior.Conclusions:A standard definition of "disruptive behavior" is needed, as is a valid and reliable measure of the phenomenon before interventions to address the problem can be developed.

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