Indian Journal of Critical Care Medicine

Register      Login



Volume / Issue

Online First

Related articles

VOLUME 27 , ISSUE 7 ( July, 2023 ) > List of Articles

Original Article

Assessment of Psychological Well-being Among Medical Professionals Working with Patients Who Suffer from Physical Trauma: An Observational Study from India

Sahil Gupta, Gayatri Bhatia, Rajesh Sagar, Sushma Sagar

Keywords : Burnout, Healthcare professionals, Professional quality of life, Secondary traumatic stress, Trauma

Citation Information : Gupta S, Bhatia G, Sagar R, Sagar S. Assessment of Psychological Well-being Among Medical Professionals Working with Patients Who Suffer from Physical Trauma: An Observational Study from India. Indian J Crit Care Med 2023; 27 (7):493-502.

DOI: 10.5005/jp-journals-10071-24488

License: CC BY-NC 4.0

Published Online: 30-06-2023

Copyright Statement:  Copyright © 2023; The Author(s).


Background: Healthcare providers working with victims of physical trauma are exposed to significant human suffering at work. This may place them at risk of burnout, secondary traumatic stress (STS), and other psychological disturbances. This study aimed to evaluate the professional quality of life and psychological well-being among trauma professionals. Methodology: This was a cross-sectional study conducted among 153 staff members (nursing officers, resident doctors, and faculty) of a Level 1 trauma center in North India. The Professional Quality of Life (ProQoL-5) and Depression, Anxiety, and Stress (DASS-21) Scales were used. Results: More than 50% of the participants had a moderate risk of burnout and STS. In addition, 54% of participants reported having anxiety, 40% stress, and 36% depressive symptoms. Depression, anxiety, and stress were all strongly predicted by burnout and STS. Conclusion: Psychological distress symptoms were seen in a significant portion of professionals working in the trauma center. Workplace interventions for the promotion of psychological well-being among trauma professionals are recommended.

  1. Joseph B, Parvaneh S, Swartz T, Haider AA, Hassan A, Kulvatunyou N, et al. Stress among surgical attending physicians and trainees: A quantitative assessment during trauma activation and emergency surgeries. J Trauma Acute Care Surg 2016;81(4):723–728. DOI: 10.1097/TA.0000000000001162.
  2. Stehman CR, Testo Z, Gershaw RS, Kellogg AR. Burnout, drop out, suicide: physician loss in emergency medicine, Part I. West J Emerg Med 2019;20(3):485–494. DOI: 10.5811/westjem.2019.4.40970.
  3. Crabbe JM. Are health professionals getting caught in the crossfire? The personal implications of caring for trauma victims. Emerg Med J 2004;21(5):568–572. DOI: 10.1136/emj.2003.008540.
  4. Berg GM, Harshbarger JL, Ahlers-Schmidt CR, Lippoldt D. Exposing compassion fatigue and burnout syndrome in a trauma team: a qualitative study. J Trauma Nurs 2016;23(1):3–10. DOI: 10.1097/JTN.0000000000000172.
  5. Jacobowitz W, Moran C, Best C, Mensah L. Post-traumatic stress, trauma-informed care, and compassion fatigue in psychiatric hospital staff: A correlational study. Issues Ment Health Nurs 2015;36(11): 890–899. DOI: 10.3109/01612840.2015.1055020.
  6. Jenkins SR, Baird S. Secondary traumatic stress and vicarious trauma: a validational study. J Trauma Stress 2002;15(5):423–432. DOI: 10.1023/A:1020193526843.
  7. De Hert S. Burnout in healthcare workers: prevalence, impact and preventative strategies. Local Reg Anesth 2020;13:171–183. DOI: 10.2147/LRA.S240564.
  8. Newell JM, MacNeil GA. Professional burnout, vicarious trauma, secondary traumatic stress, and compassion fatigue: a review of theoretical terms, risk factors, and preventive methods for clinicians and researchers. Best Pract Ment Health Int J 2010;6:57–68. Corpus ID: 147731744.
  9. Quenot JP, Rigaud JP, Prin S, Barbar S, Pavon A, Hamet M, et al. Suffering among carers working in critical care can be reduced by an intensive communication strategy on end-of-life practices. Intensive Care Med 2012;38(1):55–61. DOI: 10.1007/s00134-011-2413-z.
  10. Cetrano G, Tedeschi F, Rabbi L, Gosetti G, Lora A, Lamonaca D, et al. How are compassion fatigue, burnout, and compassion satisfaction affected by quality of working life? Findings from a survey of mental health staff in Italy. BMC Health Serv Res 2017;17(1):755. DOI: 10.1186/s12913-017-2726-x.
  11. Baqeas MH, Davis J, Copnell B. Compassion fatigue and compassion satisfaction among palliative care health providers: a scoping review. BMC Palliat Care 2021;20:88. DOI: 10.1186/s12904-021-00784-5.
  12. Buselli R, Corsi M, Baldanzi S, Chiumiento M, Del Lupo E, Dell'Oste V, et al. Professional quality of life and mental health outcomes among health care workers exposed to Sars-Cov-2 (Covid-19). Int J Environ Res Public Health 2020;17(17):6180. DOI: 10.3390/ijerph17176180.
  13. Sprang G, Clark JJ, Whitt-Woosley A. Compassion fatigue, compassion satisfaction, and burnout: factors impacting a professional's quality of life. J Loss Trauma 2007;12(3):259–280. DOI: 10.1080/15325020701238093.
  14. Zhang Y ying, Zhang C, Han XR, Li W, Wang Y lei. Determinants of compassion satisfaction, compassion fatigue and burn out in nursing. Medicine (Baltimore). 2018;97(26):e11086. DOI: 10.1097/MD.0000000000011086.
  15. El-Shafei DA, Abdelsalam AE, Hammam RAM, Elgohary H. Professional quality of life, wellness education, and coping strategies among emergency physicians. Environ Sci Pollut Res 2018;25(9):9040–9050. DOI: 10.1007/s11356-018-1240-y.
  16. Bhatia G, Sharma P, Pal A, Parmar A. The silent epidemic: Death by suicide among physicians. Asia-Pac Psychiatry Off J Pac Rim Coll Psychiatr 2023;15(1):e12522. DOI: 10.1111/appy.12522.
  17. Sunil R, Bhatt MT, Bhumika TV, Thomas N, Puranik A, Chaudhuri S, et al. Weathering the storm: psychological impact of COVID-19 pandemic on clinical and nonclinical healthcare workers in India. Indian J Crit Care Med Peer-Rev Off Publ Indian Soc Crit Care Med 2021;25(1):16–20. DOI: 10.5005/jp-journals-10071-23702.
  18. Han JL, Pappas TN. A review of empathy, its importance, and its teaching in surgical training. J Surg Educ 2018;75(1):88–94. DOI: 10.1016/j.jsurg.2017.06.035.
  19. Fennern E, Sur MD. Surgical Empathy. In: Lonchyna VA, Kelley P, Angelos P, editors. Difficult Decisions in Surgical Ethics: An Evidence-Based Approach [Internet]. Cham: Springer International Publishing; 2022 [cited 2023 Feb 9]. pp. 131–43. (Difficult Decisions in Surgery: An Evidence-Based Approach). DOI:10.1007/978-3-030-84625-1_10.
  20. Bhatia G, Shetty JV. Trends of change in empathy among Indian medical students: a two-year follow-up study. Indian J Psychol Med 2023;45(2):162–167. DOI: 10.1177/02537176221104688.
  21. Shoji K, Lesnierowska M, Smoktunowicz E, Bock J, Luszczynska A, Benight CC, et al. What comes first, job burnout or secondary traumatic stress? Findings from two longitudinal studies from the U.S. and Poland. PLOS One 2015;10(8):e0136730. DOI: 10.1371/journal.pone.0136730.
  22. Narukurthi P, Macharapu R, Mallepalli PKR, Babu RS. The relationship between professional quality of life and general health of postgraduates in a Tertiary Care Hospital. Arch Ment Health 2018;19(2):141. DOI: 10.4103/AMH.AMH_32_18.
  23. Galiana L, Oliver A, Arena F, De Simone G, Tomás JM, Vidal-Blanco G, et al. Development and validation of the Short Professional Quality of Life Scale based on versions IV and V of the Professional Quality of Life Scale. Health Qual Life Outcomes 2020;18(1):364. DOI: 10.1186/s12955-020-01618-3.
  24. Sharma MK, Hallford DJ, Anand N. Confirmatory factor analysis of the depression, anxiety, and stress scale among Indian adults. Indian J Psychiatry 2020;62(4):379–383. DOI: 10.4103/psychiatry.IndianJPsychiatry_313_19.
  25. Moya E, Larson LM, Stewart RC, Fisher J, Mwangi MN, Phiri KS. Reliability and validity of depression anxiety stress scale (DASS)-21 in screening for common mental disorders among postpartum women in Malawi. BMC Psychiatry 2022;22(1):352. DOI: 10.1186/s12888-022-03994-0.
  26. Bhagwagar H. Secondary trauma, burnout and resilience among mental health professionals from India: a review of research. Asian J Psychiatry 2022;76:103227. DOI: 10.1016/j.ajp.2022.103227.
  27. Khasne RW, Dhakulkar BS, Mahajan HC, Kulkarni AP. Burnout among healthcare workers during COVID-19 pandemic in India: results of a questionnaire-based survey. Indian J Crit Care Med Peer-Rev Off Publ Indian Soc Crit Care Med 2020;24(8):664–671. DOI: 10.5005/jp-journals-10071-23518.
  28. Kader N, Elhusein B, Chandrappa NSK, Nashwan AJ, Chandra P, Khan AW, et al. Perceived stress and post-traumatic stress disorder symptoms among intensive care unit staff caring for severely ill coronavirus disease 2019 patients during the pandemic: a national study. Ann Gen Psychiatry 2021;20(1):38. DOI: 10.1186/s12991-021-00363-1.
  29. Kanmani TR, Thimmappur RM, Birudu R, Reddy N K, Raj P. Burden and psychological distress of intensive care unit caregivers of traumatic brain injury patients. Indian J Crit Care Med Peer-Rev Off Publ Indian Soc Crit Care Med 2019;23(5):220–223. DOI: 10.5005/jp-journals-10071-23164.
  30. Kamhi SV, Begunova Y, Tang S, Rodríguez Jiménez RS, Soybel DI. Clinical empathy for the surgical patient: lessons from W.H. Auden's Prose and Poetry. Ann Surg Open 2021;2(3):e083. DOI: 10.1097/AS9.0000000000000083.
  31. Von Rueden KT, Hinderer KA, McQuillan KA, Murray M, Logan T, Kramer B, et al. Secondary traumatic stress in trauma nurses: prevalence and exposure, coping, and personal/environmental characteristics. J Trauma Nurs 2010;17(4):191–200. DOI: 10.1097/JTN.0b013e3181ff2607.
  32. Jenkins SR, Baird S. Secondary traumatic stress and vicarious trauma: a validational study. J Trauma Stress 2002;15(5):423–432. DOI: 10.1023/A:1020193526843.
PDF Share
PDF Share

© Jaypee Brothers Medical Publishers (P) LTD.