Presentation Information

Carolyn Ruth Hastie

Aftershock: what do we need to do now we know the extent of workplace bullying in midwifery?

  • Speaker: Carolyn Ruth Hastie , RN, RM, Cert Sexual and Reproductive Health, Dip Teach, Grad Dip PHC, MPhil
  • Presentation Type:
  • Duration: 60 Mins
  • Credits: 1 CERP, 1 ACM CPD, 1 ACNM CEU, 0.1 Midwifery CEU

A work environment that lacks effective teamwork is synonymous with a work culture where bullying thrives. Bullying is commonly defined as “repeated, unreasonable behaviour directed towards an employee or group of employees that creates a risk to health and safety”. Bullying is an expensive business: an estimated $6 billion to $36 billion is lost to the Australian economy every year. Bullying is common. In one Australian study, 32% of 447 nurses and midwives surveyed reported that they have experienced bullying. Bullying is, therefore, a major source of workplace distress. When staff are bullied, errors are more common and patients suffer the consequences. In seeking to improve patient safety, a workplace culture improvement plan along with four pillars of reform has been recommended: 1) information technology development, 2) evidence-informed practice standards and guidelines, 3) planned, systematic, multidisciplinary education and training of professional staff, and 4) fostering a teamwork culture. Managers have a legal and ethical responsibility to put this plan into action.