PURPOSE: This article examines the nursing literature on workplace bullying with the aim of reaching a better understanding of the phenomenon. BACKGROUND: Workplace bullying occurs in many occupations and workplaces, including nursing. METHODS: The following databases were used for the literature review: CINAHL, PubMed, Pro Quest and EBSCO host. Only articles in English were used. Articles from outside the nursing literature were also examined to gain a broader understanding of workplace bullying. FINDINGS: Workplace bullying is more than a simple conflict between two individuals. It is a complex phenomenon that can only be understood through an examination of social, individual and organizational factors. Workplace bullying has been shown to impact the physical and psychological health of victims, as well as their performance at work. Workplace bullying impacts the organization through decreased productivity, increased sick time and employee attrition. CONCLUSIONS: More nurse-specific research is needed in this area. Research needs to be conducted in a systematic and uniform manner so that generalizations across studies can be made. The ultimate goal of this research should be to generate an understanding of this phenomenon so that solutions can be found.
Available at: http://works.bepress.com/susan_johnson/2/