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A Journal on Psychiatry, Psychology and Psychopharmacology

Official Journal of the Italian Society of Social Psychiatry
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Minerva Psichiatrica 1999 December;40(4):281-6

language: Italian

Therapeutic factors in a training group of operators in a newborn resuscitation division

Vender S., Callegari C.


The sophisticated technology of medicine, which has made particular progress in some sectors can lead to an increase in emotional tension requiring a space to fulfil institutional aims. Each institution has more or less formal meeting opportunities among operators that allow personal exchanges that build up the life of the institution itself. When these meetings become non-functional they create tension which interferes with normal activities. The experience of a training group in a ward of neonatal resuscitation has emphasised the gap between high technical skills and knowledge of involved paramedical operators and the dramatic emotional experiences due to total responsability in the life of the new born baby, the fear of genetic diseases, the competition with parents and, last but not least, the fear of communicating diagnosis and prognosis (this problem is also present in other sectors). The peculiarity of this therapeutic activity is in the need to shield patients from the outside world, both to prevent infections and to mantain a protective distance from parents' feelings. This defence mechanism can lead to positive results but can also interfere with the desire for a better psychological approach to the work. Brief flashes of work group experience show a reflection on therapeutic factors in training groups.

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