A Systematic Review of Workplace Violence Against Emergency Medical Services Responders

Regan M. Murray, Andrea L. Davis, Lauren J. Shepler, Lori Moore-Merrell, William J. Troup, Joseph A. Allen, Jennifer A. Taylor

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

36 Scopus citations


Emergency Medical Service (EMS) responders deliver patient care in high-risk, high-stress, and highly variable scenarios. This unpredictable work environment exposes EMS responders to many risks, one of which is violence. The primary goals of this systematic literature review were to (1) define the issue of violence experienced by EMS responders and (2) identify the risk factors of violence associated with the EMS profession. An innovative inclusion of industrial literature with traditional peer-reviewed literature was performed. Of 387 articles retrieved, 104 articles were assessed and reviewed. Career exposure for EMS responders to at least one instance of verbal and/or physical violence was between 57 and 93 percent. There is a great need for rigorously designed, nationally representative examinations of occupational exposures in order to better understand the temporal associations of violence, cumulative occupational stressors, and the outcomes of physical and psychosocial injuries that are occurring as a result of exposures to violence.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)487-503
Number of pages17
JournalNew Solutions
Issue number4
StatePublished - Feb 1 2020


  • emergency medical services
  • first responders
  • systematic literature review
  • workplace violence

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health
  • Health, Toxicology and Mutagenesis


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