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Stalking of Healthcare Professionals by Their Clients: The Prevalence, Motivation, and Effect

DOI: 10.4236/ojmp.2021.102003, PP. 27-35

Keywords: Stalking, Erotomania, Misguided Expectation, Resentment, Healthcare Professionals

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Abstract:

It is proposed that healthcare professionals are prone to be stalked by their patients, but many feel ashamed to talk about it, believing that they might have done something to warrant the stalking. We undertook a rigorous review of the literature with the primitive goal of highlighting noteworthy issues on the stalking of healthcare professionals and psychologists by their patients. Databases such as PubMed and Google Scholar were searched to collate articles and studies on the topic with the keywords “stalker, stalking, assaults, aggression, and physicians”. From the review, the prevalence rate of stalking healthcare professionals ranged between 6% - 53%. This huge variation was largely due to the inconsistencies in the definition of what constituted stalking. The common motives of stalkers were largely due to erotomania or misguided expectation and a sense of resentment due to service dissatisfaction. Finally, it was apparently right to conclude that, medical doctors or healthcare professionals are at risk of being stalked on the grounds of service dissatisfaction, and mismanagement of treatment processes resulting in physical or perceived client injuries. Whereas psychologists and other psychiatrists are more prone to be stalked due to erotomaniac reasons.

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