What is it about?
In a survey of 761 staff at three psychiatric hospitals, 16% screened positive for PTSD on a self-report assessment. Also, 20% screened positive for depression, and 16% for anxiety. PTSD symptoms were uniquely associated with exposure to workplace trauma. Most participants (62%) did not seek any formal support for their mental health; when they did, they most often went to see a family doctor (47%). Participants meeting the PTSD screening cut-off were more likely to seek help, but were also more likely to face barriers. Most psychiatric staff who screened positive for PTSD, depression, or anxiety thought they could handle it without treatment (65%).
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Why is it important?
This study shows that nurses and others who work in psychiatric hospitals can experience workplace trauma and other mental health problems. Making sure that mental health services are available to healthcare providers is important, but so is awareness of the stigma and structural barriers that make it difficult for mental health care providers to seek help for their own mental health.
Read the Original
This page is a summary of: Post-traumatic Stress Disorder, Depression, Anxiety Symptoms and Help Seeking in Psychiatric Staff, The Canadian Journal of Psychiatry, March 2020, SAGE Publications, DOI: 10.1177/0706743720916356.
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Trauma among Psychiatric Workers Research and Knowledge Translation Project
Learn more about our research, download our recommendations for psychiatric hospitals, and find other resources
Trauma among Psychiatric Workers: A Research and Knowledge Translation Project
Psychiatric hospitals can be rewarding places to work, but the work can also be stressful. The Trauma among Psychiatric Workers project ran surveys, interviews, and focus groups at psychiatric hospitals in Ontario, Canada. See our research outputs here.
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