Date of Award

Spring 5-5-2023

Document Type

DNP Project

Project Team Faculty Member

Mary Zerlan

Project Team Faculty Member

Tracy Cooley

Project Team Faculty Member

Rahul Sinha


second victimhood, anesthesia, victim, PTSD, second victim, CRNA


Anesthesia providers work in environments promoting productivity with tremendous pressure to begin the next case regardless of any recent adverse events that may have occurred (Wands, 2021). Certified nurse anesthesiologists (CRNAs) potentially struggle with a lack of recognition, a high number of hours, inadequate work-life balance, and limited professional advancement, which all contribute to high stress levels within the field (Andrade & Dantas, 2015). A healthcare professional involved in an unexpected adverse event, medical error, or patient-related injury is labeled as a second victim. Thirty anesthesia providers from a central Illinois hospital viewed a PowerPoint presentation, completed a survey, and ranked scenarios on a 5-point Likert scale. All participants state the presentation increased second victimhood knowledge, and the majority (60%, n=18) admit to having experienced second victimhood. Regarding the most beneficial support, 96.7% of respondents chose talking to a trusted peer. Second Victim Experience and Support Tool (SVEST) results detailed the severity of second victimhood experienced by CRNAs. Inadequately resolving chronic stressors can have negative implications, such as leaving the career or even suicide. However, studies show that supportive management and trustworthy peers improve outcomes for healthcare providers experiencing second victimhood symptoms.

Keywords: second victimhood, anesthesia, patient outcomes, CRNA, nurse anesthetist, post-traumatic stress disorder, mental health.

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