Saskatoon StarPhoenix

Male nurses suffer more abuse: study

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OTTAWA (CNS) — A higher number of Canadian male nurses are experienci­ng physical assault and emotional abuse than their female counterpar­ts, according to a study published Wednesday by Statistics Canada.

The Health Reports study looked at patients abusing nurses providing direct care in hospitals or long-term care facilities and is the first of its kind to study the problem.

Of the 12,200 Canadian nurses studied in 2005, a higher percentage of male nurses were reporting abuse. Nearly half (46 per cent) of male nurses reported they had been physically assaulted by a patient in the previous year, compared with 33 per cent of female nurses, according to the study.

Emotional abuse was reported by 55 per cent of male nurses and 46 per cent of female nurses.

The study suggested one reason for a higher percentage of male abuse could be that there is a greater tendency to expose men to violent patients and a tendency for male nurses to feel protective of female staff and assume the primary role in restrainin­g aggressive patients.

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