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Stress reactions following acute situations involving moral challenges among health care professionals
Swedish Defence University, Department of Security, Strategy and Leadership (ISSL), Ledarskapscentrum.ORCID iD: 0000-0001-8274-6065
Swedish Defence University, Department of Security, Strategy and Leadership (ISSL), Ledarskapscentrum.
Swedish Defence University, Department of Security, Strategy and Leadership (ISSL), Ledarskapscentrum.
Swedish Defence University, Department of Security, Strategy and Leadership (ISSL), Ledarskapscentrum.
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2018 (English)In: Scandinavian Journal of Psychology, ISSN 0036-5564, E-ISSN 1467-9450, Vol. 59, no 2, p. 177-185Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

Many health care professionals have to make morally difficult decisions during acute, stressful situations. The aim was to explore the applicability of an existing qualitatively developed model of individual reactions among professional first responders following such situations using a quantitative approach. According to the model, the interaction of antecedent individual and contextual characteristics affect the immediate emotional reactions to acute, stressful events involving a moral dilemma. Continuous coping efforts and the quality of social support will also affect the long‐term positive and negative reactions to the event. The participants (n = 204, about 50% response rate) represented three Swedish health care professions stationed at a university hospital and a regional hospital: Physicians (n = 50), nurses (n = 94) and “others” (n =60, mainly social welfare officers and assistant nurses). Except for the personality dimension emotional stability which was measured using an established instrument, all measurement scales were operationalizations of codes and categories from the qualitative study (ten scales altogether). Four multiple regression analyses were performed with long‐term positive and negative reactions in everyday acute and morally extremely taxing situations respectively as dependent variables. The outcome showed that long‐term positive reactions covaried with much use of the coping strategies Emotional distancing and Constructive emotional confrontation and a perception of a well‐functioning Formal social support. Regarding long‐term negative reactions, higher age and little use of Emotional distancing accounted for much of the variance. Immediate emotional reactions also contributed significantly. Conclusion: the results largely supported the model concepts and their assumed relationships.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
2018. Vol. 59, no 2, p. 177-185
Keywords [en]
health care, stress, moral dilemma, coping, immediate reactions, long-term reactions
National Category
Psychology
Research subject
Ledarskap under påfrestande förhållanden
Identifiers
URN: urn:nbn:se:fhs:diva-7368DOI: 10.1111/sjop.12425OAI: oai:DiVA.org:fhs-7368DiVA, id: diva2:1193171
Available from: 2018-03-26 Created: 2018-03-26 Last updated: 2018-04-03Bibliographically approved

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Larsson, GerryNilsson, SofiaHyllengren, PederOhlsson, Alicia

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