The Leading Peer-Reviewed Journal for the Primary Care Nursing Team
User log in


Personal safety

Personal safety in the workplace

Practice nurses face significant physical and psychological demands at work, some of which are specific or unique to the job. These include workplace exposures – from injuries, exposure to toxic substances or pathogens – and direct risks from violent patients.Nurses in general practice should have a working knowledge of Health & Safety requirements within the workplace, adopt sound infection control measures, be able to identify – and if appropriate – take action on the risks to health of microbiological and chemical hazards within the workplace, and know how to use the personal security systems in place in their own practice.Before undertaking this resource, you will find it useful to read Issues in personal safety (Lowth M. Practice Nurse, April 2014;44(4):34-39

Aims and objectives

  • Discuss the general and specific risks faced by practice nurses
  • Demonstrate awareness of strategies to deal with violence and aggression
  • Demonstrate awareness of strategies for preventing or deflecting an attack
  • Conduct a personal safety assessment of your workplace and identify useful changes
  • Describe your rights as an employee regarding health and safety in the workplace

Recommended reading

Royal College of Nursing: Health and Safety

NHS Health and Safety Executive: Guidance on Working Alone

Practice Nurse featured article

Issues in personal safety Dr Mary Lowth

Date of preparation: June 2014

Review date: June 2015