After the Omagh bomb: Posttraumatic stress disorder in health service staff

Authors

  • Anna Luce,

    1. Centre for Clinical Psychology and Healthcare Research, University of Northumbria at Newcastle, Newcastle upon Tyne, England, United Kingdom
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  • Jenny Firth-Cozens,

    Corresponding author
    1. Centre for Clinical Psychology and Healthcare Research, University of Northumbria at Newcastle, Newcastle upon Tyne, England, United Kingdom
    • Centre for Clinical Psychology and Healthcare Research, University of Northumbria at Newcastle, Kielder House, Coach Lane Campus, Benton Road, Newcastle upon Tyne NE7 7XA. England, United Kingdom
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  • Simon Midgley,

    1. Centre for Clinical Psychology and Healthcare Research, University of Northumbria at Newcastle, Newcastle upon Tyne, England, United Kingdom
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  • Clive Burges

    1. Sperrin Lakeland Health and Social Care Trust, Tyrone & Fermanagh Hospital, Omagh, County Tyrone, Northern Ireland, United Kingdom
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Abstract

In this postal survey of 1064 health service staff working closest to the Omagh bombing in Northern Ireland, approximately half reported having professional or civilian involvement. Types of involvement and posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD) levels varied between staff groups. Staff involved both professionally and as a civilian, particularly those who witnessed the trauma, or those who had experienced previous emotional problems and trauma, had the highest levels of symptomatology. Although staff with higher PTSD symptoms were more likely to seek professional help, only a minority contacted professionals for support.

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