ORIGINAL PAPER
Effectiveness of a stress management program in continuous care nursing professionals
 
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1
Comprehensive Health Research Center, University of Evora, Evora, Portugal
2
Association for Family Planning, Vilavicosa, Portugal
3
Research Center in Education and Psychology, University of Evora, Evora, Portugal
Submission date: 2020-05-16
Final revision date: 2020-08-26
Acceptance date: 2020-08-26
Online publication date: 2020-10-15
Publication date: 2020-10-15
 
Health Psychology Report 2021;9(1):49–62
 
KEYWORDS
TOPICS
ABSTRACT
Background:
Nursing is a stressful profession, because it is highly specialized work done under conditions of considerable pressure and has consequently a strong psychological impact. Occupational stress has been considered a serious public health problem, especially in the case of the nursing profession, with considerable conse-quences for the individual, for the quality of his work and for the associated economic costs. Although the topic of stress has become an important field of research, experimental studies on stress management strategies are rather scarce, especially in the case of the so-called risk professions, such as nursing.

Participants and procedure:
The present study applied a cognitive-behavioral training program for stress management to a sample of nurs-ing professionals (N = 5) from an intensive care unit. The intervention was applied on the basis of a multiple baseline design. Evaluation of results was carried using quantitative and one qualitative measures. Emphasis was given to evaluation of physiological, cognitive and emotional symptoms of stress.

Results:
The main hypotheses seem to have been confirmed, i.e. the stress management program reduces the partici-pants’ physiological, cognitive and emotional stress symptoms according to applied assessment instruments. The results show different levels of stress reduction, as well as an improvement of the number and efficacy of the coping skills of the participants. Correlations were found between quantitative measures, between quantita-tive and qualitative measures, as well as between physiological, cognitive and emotional symptoms of stress.

Conclusions:
Research hypotheses were confirmed, i.e., the applied program seems to be able to reduce stress.

 
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