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Violence occurs in the health care workplace, where it is a particularly serious problem. It constitutes a threat to effective care and it entrenches upon the rights of integrity and probity. Worldwide, one in every 3 nurses has experienced some sort of violence in their workplace mostly from the patients and their relatives. Attacks against nurses and other healthcare professionals take place in all fields of practice and they are considered to be an occupational hazard. Violence in the health care workplace includes physical, sexual, emotional attacks, verbal and physical abuse and threats of damage, but the most common form is psychological violence. Work factors, such as work overload, unsafe working conditions and insufficient human resources, all contribute to the phenomenon of stress and aggression against nurses and aggravate the danger for patients and associates. The consequences of workplace violence are multiple for both the health care professionals and the health care system. It is the responsibility of every nurse not only to make a report of an episode of violence, but also to intervene effectively whenever violent incidents take place in the workplace. All health care professionals should be educated in special programs for the prevention, detection and management of violence.