Disruptive behaviors in healthcare -- implications for patients
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Disruptive behavior among healthcare workers can have a significant and detrimental effect on the provision of safe and effective patient care. The causes of disruptive behavior are complex but disruptive behavior can occur when staff members turn their anger and frustration toward their coworkers. The consequences of disruptive behavior impede communication and erode teamwork which leads to avoidable medical errors, malpractice risk, and other compromises in quality care. In order to minimize the adverse effects of disruptive behavior, healthcare organizations need to develop zero tolerance policies, provide education to employees and patients, and implement strict standards to effectively deal with this issue. An increased understanding of the causes and consequences of disruptive behavior will help members of the healthcare team effectively deal with frustrations inherent to the high stress environment in which they work and help minimize displaced anger. A better understanding of disruptive behavior will also help organizations and medical schools provide education and training that can lessen the likelihood of disruptive behavior and improve the overall effectiveness of the healthcare team.