Published: 2017-07-26

To study medical students' perspective on rising violence against doctors. Do they consider obstetrics and gynecology a risky branch?

Reena Sood, Gurmeet Singh, Parvinder Kaur Arora


Background: In recent years, there has been an epidemic of violence against health professional in many nations including India. The Indian Medical Association (IMA) has reported that 75% of doctors have faced physical or verbal violence during their lifetime. The objective of present study was to evaluate the medical student perspective on rising violence against doctors.

Methods: This is a cross sectional questionnaire based study carried out at Sri Guru Ram Das Institute of medical Sciences and Research Amritsar. Undergraduate medical students from second year onwards, interns and post- graduate students of the institution were included in the study. Data was compiled and statistically analysed.

Results: Total 497 medical students participated in the study. Among participants 327 (65.8%) were undergraduates, 106 (21.3%) were interns, 64 (12.9%) were postgraduate students 97.18% of students said that they were aware of rising incidents of violence against doctors. while 96% of participants said that they were concerned about the problem. For 86.1% students source of information of these incidents was social media. 82.5% participants said that doctors are at higher risk of being victim of violence than other profession. 89.1% of participants who had said that doctors are at higher risk of being victims of violence than other professions have said yes to the question that doctors need to be trained in martial arts. 70.2% said that these incidences would affect their future carrier choices. 60.8% Students said that certain specialties are more prone to receive violence than others. In response to an open-ended question which specialties are more prone, 83.6% participants had written surgical branches and obstetrics and gynecology.

Conclusions: The study indicates that they find certain specialties more-risky and their inclination towards non- surgical branches for post-graduation.


Medical students, Obstetrics and gynecology, Violence

Full Text:



Workplace violence. Occupational safety and health administration. Available at Accessed on 10 June 2017

WHO. Violence and injury prevention. Violence against health workers. Available at Accessed on 10 June 2017.

Over 75% of doctors have faced violence at work, study finds - Times of India [Internet]. The Times of India. 2017 [cited 28 June 2017]. Available at

Neet PG Counselling 2017. Available at

Ramachandran CK. Physicians and surgeons in ancient India. Anc Sci Life. 1981;1(2):69-71.

Morrison J, Lantos J, Levinson W. Aggression and violence directed toward physicians. J General Inter Med. 1998;13(8):556-61.

Xu XY, Gao W, Zhang AJ, Huang J, Cui M, Zhao W. What has shaken the determination of medical students to become a doctor? Chinese Med J. 2017;130(8):1001.

Jha RK, Paudel KR, Shah DK, Sah AK, Basnet S, Sah P et al. Subject preferences of first- and second-year medical students for their future specialization at Chitwan Medical College and Teaching Hospital, Chitwan, Nepal Bangladash; a questionnaire-based study. Adv Med Edu Pract. 2015;6:609.

Anand T, Grover S, Kumar R, Kumar M, Ingle GK. Workplace violence against resident doctors in a tertiary care hospital in Delhi. Natl Med J India. 2016;29(6):344.

Sharma D. Rising violence against health workers in India. The Lancet. 2017;389(10080):1685.

Rao JS. Medical negligence liability under the consumer protection act: A review of judicial perspective. Indian J Urol. 2009;25(3):361.

Ambesh P. Violence against doctors in the Indian subcontinent: A rising bane. Indian Heart J. 2016;68(5):749-50.

Supe A. Violence against doctors cannot be tolerated – The BMJ [Internet]. 2017 [cited 16 June 2017]. Available at

IMA to launch online registry to compile cases of violence against doctors - ET HealthWorld [Internet]. 2017 [cited 27 June 2017]. Available at