Ethical Analysis An Increase in Hostility and Horizontal Violence among Staff

EthicalAnalysis: An Increase in Hostility and Horizontal Violence amongStaff

EthicalAnalysis: An Increase in Hostility and Horizontal Violence amongStaff

Descriptionof the Situation

Horizontalviolence relates to acts that happen between colleagues wherebullying is defined as acts perpetrated by individuals in a higherlevel of power and occur over time. The acts can be over or covert orverbal or non-verbal violence. The issue of hostility and horizontalviolence is widespread in the healthcare sector[ CITATION Pat143 l 1033 ].Individuals in different departments bully one another. This type ofviolence in the workplace can be costly in terms of productivity,hence the need to handle it. It is prevalent in the healthcareindustry, specifically, in healthcare organizations[ CITATION Dia132 l 1033 ].


Theethical challenge presented in the case is trying to ensureindividuals working for the same organization do not engage in actsthat end up affecting their colleagues in a negative manner. Thosewho engage in horizontal violence and hostility are likely to resistsuch a change considering it might impact their ability to displaytheir power. The challenge becomes how to find ways to convinceindividuals at the organization to embrace showing friendly behaviorsto their colleagues.

Implicationsfor Patient Outcomes and Safety

Healthcarepractitioners in different departments need to work as a team toensure quality services to patients. For example, nurses andpharmacists need to work with one another to provide the bestservices that guarantee patient, good patient outcomes, and safety[ CITATION Pat143 l 1033 ].Hostility and horizontal violence create a barrier to effectivecollaboration among staff members in a healthcare organization. Assuch, it is imperative for such issues to be solved and for thehospital management to ensure the development of a teamwork culture.Failure to ensure thesame can result in a bad communication among team members hence,medical errors that can even cost a life.


Differentstakeholders are presented in the case. For one, there are the staffmembers who are directly affected by the increased horizontalviolence. This group is interested in the creation of a workplacewhere everyone feels appreciated and loved. The management is also astakeholder interested in addressing the issue to guarantee goodpatient outcome and safety. The management will also be keen to dealwith the problems to safeguard the reputation of the organization.Patients are also stakeholders who are likely to be interested in theissue being addressed to access quality healthcare services. Clearly,services rendered in an organization are affected negatively whenindividuals show hostility towards one another. The government isalso a stakeholder keen to ensure healthcare organizations providequality services to the public. Discipline among practitioners isalso of the essence. This also explains why the organization needs toaddress the challenge to avoid problems with the law[ CITATION Bes15 l 1033 ].


Researchhas shown that the issue of hostility and horizontal violence iswidespread among healthcare organizations in the contemporary world.This challenge is common among nurses, pharmacists, student nurses,and doctors among others[ CITATION Pat143 l 1033 ].Those who consider themselves to be in superior positions arereported to have high tendencies regarding bullying or hostility.Commonly, those in lower positions suffer the most[ CITATION Tru16 l 1033 ].This explains why qualified, and student nurses report many cases ofhorizontal hostility. However, those in low positions can also showhostility towards those deemed to be their superiors. Often, theyuse tactics such as cyberbullying to achieve their goal[ CITATION Tra13 l 1033 ].

Clearly,healthcare organizations that suffer the challenge experience lowperformances among their staff. Individuals fail to work as a team toachieve high performances. Moreover, the quality of services renderedto patients is impacted[ CITATION Ann143 l 1033 ].The fact that staff members cannot collaborate means that they areless likely to come to each other’s aid should the need arise tooffer the right service. Organizations that ensure zero tolerance tohostility and horizontal violence report good performances andfriendly behaviors among their staff. Individuals also show thewillingness to go an extra mile in helping their colleagues realizetheir goals and objectives[ CITATION Tru16 l 1033 ].

Differentstrategies can be utilized to deal with the issue of hostility amongstaff. In most cases, the management tries to remind the staff of theimportance of creating a collaborative work environment. In the sameregard, the management reminds individuals that they are allimportant for the organization to function effectively[ CITATION Bes15 l 1033 ].The factors that cause hostility and violence are dealt with. Thereare times when organizational factors can contribute to increasedviolence. In such a situation, dealing with the factors is the bestway to ensure employees avoid similar acts. Specifically, removingthe motivation factor leads to one favoring other behaviors overbeing hostile or violent[ CITATION Dia132 l 1033 ].


Theissue of hostility and horizontal violence among staff has becomeprevalent. It is essential for the management to deal with the sameto avoid negative impacts often linked with it such issues. Differentstrategies can be applied to deal with these challenges depending onthe situation or the causal factors. All in all, with the rightstrategies in place, a healthcare organization can end hostility andviolence among staff.


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