This site is intended for health professionals only

Abuse of nurses and the Respect campaign

Earlier this year, a Royal College of Nursing survey revealed that 60% of nurses who visit patients at home had been verbally assaulted while doing their job.

More than one in ten of those questioned said that they had been physically attacked, and almost 40% felt that the risk to lone workers had risen in the past two years, citing increasing caseloads amongst the reasons for this rise.

Statistics like these may shock many, but for nurses working in the community, these dangers are often all too real. With the workloads and importance of community nurses set to increase still further following the implementation of the coalition government's Health and Social Care Act, it is understandable that such fears will continue to grow.

At Nursing in Practice, we know what an important job primary care and community nurses do, and we feel it is your absolute right to do your job without abuse from the very people you are trying to help. But more than that, we believe that you should be actively recognised, and indeed celebrated, for the essential work that you do.

It is from this fundamental belief that the Nursing in Practice 'Respect' Campaign was born. Our mission is to try and help raise the profile of primary care nurses and make people aware of your vital role. We want you to be valued and respected by everyone you come into contact with, from patients to colleagues, to the government and media.

The Respect campaign was launched last week in Newcastle to a supportive and enthusiastic crowd. The campaign includes an e-petition on the Number 10 website, and we aim to collect 100,000 signatures to trigger a debate in parliament, and lobby for a national day of recognition for primary care and community nurses.

Make sure your voice gets heard by signing up and registering your signature now. Spread the word amongst your patients, colleagues and friends, and encourage them to lend their support to the campaign too - after all they, more than anyone, understand what a fantastic job you are doing.