Cognitive appraisals, objectivity and coping in ambulance workers: a pilot study
- 1Clinical Psychology and Neuropsychology Department, Nottingham University Hospitals NHS Trust, Nottingham, UK
- 2Department of Experimental Psychology, University of Oxford, Oxford, UK
- 3Department of Psychology, Institute of Psychiarty, King's College London, London, UK
- Correspondence to Dr Jennifer Wild, Department of Experimental Psychology, University of Oxford, South Parks Road, Oxford OX1 3UD;
- Received 15 July 2011
- Revised 15 July 2011
- Accepted 23 November 2012
- Published Online First 10 January 2013
Objectives Ambulance workers are regularly exposed to call-outs, which are potentially psychologically traumatic. The ability to remain objective and make adaptive appraisals during call-outs may be beneficial to this at-risk population. This pilot study investigated the links between cognitive appraisals, objectivity and coping in ambulance workers.
Methods Forty-five ambulance workers from the London Ambulance Service, UK, were studied. Trauma exposure, post-traumatic stress disorder and depression symptoms were assessed using self-report measures. Positive and negative appraisals were measured in relation to two previous call-outs: one during which they coped well and one during which they did not.
Results Enhanced coping was associated with making more positive appraisals during the call-out. Better coping was also related to greater levels of objectivity during these call-outs. Coping less well was associated with the use of more negative appraisals during the call-out.
Conclusions Ambulance workers may benefit from psychological interventions, which focus on cognitive reappraisal and enhancing objectivity to improve coping and resilience.
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