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ERIC Number: EJ793022
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2008
Pages: 6
Abstractor: Author
Reference Count: 0
ISSN: ISSN-0360-7283
Patient-Staff Interactions and Mental Health in Chronic Dialysis Patients
Swartz, Richard D.; Perry, Erica; Brown, Stephanie; Swartz, June; Vinokur, Amiram
Health & Social Work, v33 n2 p87-92 2008
Chronic dialysis imposes ongoing stress on patients and staff and engenders recurring contact and long-term relationships. Thus, chronic dialysis units are opportune settings in which to investigate the impact of patients' relationships with staff on patient well-being. The authors designed the present study to examine the degree to which perceptions of open communication between patients and staff affect patient mental health. A one-year, two-wave longitudinal survey assessed patient (N = 109) perceptions of the interpersonal environment and mental health. Assessments included sharing personal information (open disclosure), assisting one another (helping), staff respect for patients (respect), and hierarchical patient-staff relations (formal staff authority). Cross-sectional and longitudinal regression analyses examined how these characteristics of the interpersonal environment relate to depression and subjective well-being among patients. Multivariate analysis showed that open disclosure correlated independently with lower levels of depression at baseline (N = 109) and a predicted significant decrease in depression over time (N = 64). Other interpersonal characteristics did not correlate with depression or subjective well-being at baseline or longitudinally. The interpersonal climate in chronic dialysis units influences patient wellbeing. Contrary to traditional views, open disclosure in patients' relationships with staff is not detrimental and contributes to well-being.
National Association of Social Workers (NASW). 750 First Street NE Suite 700, Washington, DC 20002. Tel: 800-227-3590; e-mail:; Web site:
Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Research
Education Level: N/A
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A