NHS: Bullying

Department of Health written question – answered on 14th March 2017.

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Photo of Jon Ashworth Jon Ashworth Shadow Secretary of State for Health

To ask the Secretary of State for Health, what recent assessment his Department has made of the level of bullying and harassment between employees in the NHS.

Photo of Philip Dunne Philip Dunne The Minister of State, Department of Health

Results from the 2016 NHS Staff Survey show that 24% of staff reported experiencing harassment, bullying or abuse from staff in the previous 12 months, the same reported in the 2015 NHS Staff Survey. Full details of the 2016 NHS Staff Survey can be found at:


The Department considers that this level is far too high. As a result of Ministers’ intervention, last December, the Social Partnership Forum1 published its ”Call to Action”2 for system leaders, National Health Service organisations, unions and staff to work in partnership to tackle high levels of bullying and harassment in the NHS.

This “Call to Action” drew on evidence and frontline experiences which are being developed into a range of resources, advice and good practice to enable organisations to develop their own plans to tackle bullying.


1 The Social Partnership Forum brings together NHS Employers, NHS Trade Unions, NHS England, Health Education England, NHS Improvement and the Department to discuss and debate the development and implementation of the workforce implications of policy.

2 http://www.socialpartnershipforum.org/4573

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