What is known on the subject?Accessible summary
What this paper adds to existing knowledge?Accessible summary
What are the implications for practice?Aim:
To establish the association between war traumatic experiences, post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) symptoms and post-traumatic growth among nurses in the Gaza Strip, 2 years after an incursion on Gaza, and during a period of ongoing trauma exposure. This study builds on existing evidence by considering exposure to personal and work-related traumatic events, and on factors associated with later positive psychological adaptation.Methods:
The sample consisted of 274 randomly selected nurses in Gaza who completed the Gaza Traumatic Events Checklist, PTSD Checklist, and Posttraumatic Growth Inventory.Results:
Of the nurses, 19.7% reported full PTSD. There was a significant relationship between traumatic events and PTSD scores; as well as between community-related traumatic events and post-traumatic growth. Participants reported a range of traumatic events, but PTSD and post-traumatic growth scores were more strongly associated with community rather than work-related traumas.Discussion:
Nursing professionals experienced high levels of distress 2 years following an acute period of conflict, both as civilians and in their health-care capacity.Implications for Practice:
There is need for different levels of support for health-care staff in war-affected areas. Mental health nursing professionals have a central role in training, counselling and support to other health-care colleagues.