If you asked me to name a bunch of local jobs that could be described as "dangerous", I'd probably say police officers, firefighters, or construction workers, to name a few. But there's one profession I didn't immediately think of that can be just as dangerous, and there are a lot of them right here in Rochester:


According to one study, the rates of workplace violence in the health care and social assistance field are five to twelve times higher than the estimated rate for workers overall. Nurse attacks apparently occur at most hospitals and clinics every month.

Want some recent examples?

- Last week, a nurse in Arkansas was pushed down a flight of stairs by a guy arguing with medical staffers

- In June, an E.R. nurse in Massachusetts was stabbed multiple times by a patient unhappy with his care

- In May, two nurses in Illinois were taken hostage at gunpoint while caring for an inmate

That's terrible, and those are just a few examples that are reported in the news. In a recent survey, 75% of nurses have admitted to being physically or verbally abused by patients and/or their family members. And violence from patience isn't the only risk nurses take; the physical demands of their job (like lifting and moving patients) can cause more damage to a nurse's body than that of a construction worker. Wow.

I'll admit that I've never thought about how the nursing profession can be that dangerous, but all of this really puts that in perspective. Who else suddenly has a newfound respect for nurses and caregivers? They definitely deserve it for what they do on a daily basis.

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