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This study aimed to evaluate factors associated with post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) symptoms and burnout 4 years after the Great East Japan Earthquake among medical rescue workers in Disaster Medical Assistance Teams (DMATs).
We examined participants’ background characteristics, prior health condition, rescue work experiences, and the Peritraumatic Distress Inventory (PDI) score at 1 month after the earthquake. Current psychological condition was assessed by the Impact of Event Scale-Revised and Maslach Burnout Inventory administered 4 years after the earthquake. By applying univariate and multivariate linear regression analyses, we assessed the relative value of the PDI and other baseline variables for PTSD symptoms and burnout at 4 years after the earthquake.
We obtained baseline data from 254 participants during April 2 to 22, 2011. Of the 254 participants, 188 (74.0%) completed the follow-up assessment. PDI score 1 month after the earthquake was associated with symptoms of PTSD (β=0.35, P<.01) and burnout (β=0.21, P<.01). Stress before deployment was a related factor for burnout 4 years after the earthquake in these medical rescue workers (β=2.61, P<.04).
It seems important for DMAT headquarters to establish a routine system for assessing the PDI of medical rescue workers after deployment and screen those workers who have high stress prior to deployment (Disaster Med Public Health Preparedness. 2016;10:848–853)
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