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Article   |    
Incidence of PTSD Among Staff Victims of Patient Violence
Michael F. Caldwell
Psychiatric Services 1992; doi:
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Mendota Mental, Health Institute in Madison, Wisconsin

1992 by the American Psychiatric Association

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Abstract

This study clearly demonstrated that traumatically stressful events occurred fairly frequently among clinical and nonclinical staff. The clinical staff reported a very high rate of PTSD-related symptoms. No evidence was found that clinicians were immune to traumatic events. Indeed, clinicians reported reactive symptoms at a higher rate than nonclinicians. Eighty-six percent of the nonclinicians who experienced traumatic events reported later symptoms; all but one of the 138 clinicians who had such experiences reported symptoms.If one in ten employees in an industry was expected to develop a job related psychiatric disorder, the industry would likely face intense pressure to address the issue. This study shows that quite the opposite is the case in mental health facilities. Should these findings prove typical, it may be, ironically, that one of the most hazardous work settings for employee mental health is the local mental health facility.

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