Resilience and Compassion Satisfaction in Clinicians Exposed to the 9/11 Disaster

A/Professor Carol Tosone

Recorded: July 2010 Brisbane, Australia
Coping Resilience & Hope Building, Asia Pacific Regional Conference
Organiser: The Brisbane Institute of Strengths Based Practice

This paper presents the results of a survey exploring the long-term impact of 9/11 on clinicians practicing and/or residing in New York City. The focus of the study was to determine what variables are associated with clinician resiliency and professional satisfaction. A total of 481 members of the National Association of Social Work Manhattan Chapter (38% response rate) replied to the mail survey. Resiliency was measured by the Connor-Davidson Resiliency Scale and compassion satisfaction was measured by the subscale of the Professional Quality of Life Scale. Both resiliency and compassion satisfaction were associated with increased age, secure attachment, lower rates of posttraumatic stress disorder, a history of personal trauma, and advanced institute training. In response to an open-ended question regarding their 9/11 experiences, clinicians reported themes of professional posttraumatic growth, such as having greater therapeutic intimacy with patients, a renewed appreciation for their chosen profession, and a greater ability to balance personal and career demands.

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