Critical care nurses often experience symptoms of post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) when asked to recall unsuccessful attempts to resuscitate patients.

One study published in the American Journal of Critical Care analyzed the results of an online survey of 490 critical care nurses. “Finding ways to minimize distress and improve resiliency not only helps the individual nurse but may also help combat high turnover and vacancy rates for critical care nurses,” said lead author Dawn E. McMeekin, R.N., advanced clinical education specialist at Baycare Health System, Dunedin, Florida. “These results underscore the importance of maintaining a healthy work environment and nursing workforce.”

Previous studies found that nurses who work in the emergency rooms are vulnerable to “death anxiety,” a state making them more conscious of their own mortality, creating a high level of stress and unease.

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