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Int J Group Psychother. 1998 Apr;48(2):275-304.

Staff support groups for high-stress medical environments.

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  • 1Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center, USA.


Recent changes in health care delivery have added new demands to the already stressful work of medical staff, which makes the benefits of staff support groups all the more cogent. The author describes a conceptual approach to such groups and analyzes the systems issues that need to be understood to penetrate a complex institution successfully. Staff stressors are outlined along with the staff's psychological responses. Specific goals for support groups are considered and the profound technical differences between psychotherapy and support groups are delineated. The developmental stages of staff groups and their associated themes are described in tandem with practical guidelines about starting, maintaining, and terminating such groups. Special requirements of leadership style and related countertransference issues are reviewed.

[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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