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Title: Trauma and rural volunteer firefighters.
Authors: Campbell, Brad
Keywords: Volunteer firefighters;Ontario rural volunteer firefighters;Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD);Trauma;Tutty's (1996) six-point framework
Issue Date: 13-Aug-2010
Abstract: Purpose: By the nature of their jobs, firefighters are exposed to trauma on a regular basis; they are, therefore, ideal candidates for the study of trauma and Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD). Since very little has been written on volunteer firefighters (Bryant & Harvey, 1995; 1996), the purpose of this research project is to add to the body of knowledge on such workers by exploring the work experiences of a group of rural volunteer firefighters to better understand how they cope and identify the positive aspects of their work. Data sources: Qualitative methods were chosen for this study. Data sources consisted of a demographic questionnaire, individual in-depth interviews with nine northeastern Ontario rural volunteer firefighters, and a follow-up telephone interview to discuss revisions/additions to their transcripts. Data was analyzed using thematic analysis, specifically, Tutty' s (1996) six-point framework of thematic analysis.Conclusion: This research project has helped to identify mediating factors in volunteer firefighters' experiences that offset the effects of trauma exposure, which is a component of their work. The study also identified some positive aspects of volunteer firefighting and enabled us to better understand the experiences of volunteer firefighters, particularly within a rural/northern context. Implications for practice: Social Workers may be the first-line mental health/trauma workers who meet and treat volunteer firefighters in rural communities; they can play an important role in recognizing and treating PTSD symptoms in volunteer firefighters following exposure to repetitive trauma.
Appears in Collections:Social Work - Master's Major Papers

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