Risk and Protective Factors Associated with Psychosocial Functioning in 911 Operators and Dispatchers
Date of Submission
Doctor of Psychology (PsyD)
911 operators and dispatchers are considered the true “first responders” to life-threatening emergencies. Their responsibilities include responding to individuals in crisis, deciding appropriate emergency responses, gathering vital information, offering emergency instruction, and providing detailed updates about the response to callers and emergency workers. This high rate of exposure to traumatizing events enhances the risk for pathology, including posttraumatic stress symptoms (PTSS) and depressive symptoms. The objective of this study was to examine the relationship between social supports, coping style, and sleep as it relates to PTSS and depressive symptoms in 911 operators and dispatchers. Multiple linear regression models were computed to assess the effects of social support, coping style, and sleep on PTSS and depressive symptoms on operators. Participants completed online questionnaires; sample size varied as not every participant completed every measure. The Social Provisions Scale (SPS) assessed social support received (N = 140); the Coping Strategies Inventory Short-Form (CSI-SF) assessed type of coping style (N = 142); and the Pittsburg Quality of Sleep Index (PSQI) assessed quality of sleep (N = 127). Participants completed the Post Traumatic Stress Disorder Checklist for the DSM-5 (PCL-5; N = 133) and the Patient Health Questionnaire-8 (PHQ-9; N = 131) to assess PTSS and depressive symptoms. Results found social support predicted lower PTSS and depressive symptoms; greater emotion-focused disengagement strategies predicted lower PTSS depressive symptoms; and poor sleep quality predicted higher PTSS and depressive symptoms. Clinical implications and future directions are discussed.
Molina, Margarett, "Risk and Protective Factors Associated with Psychosocial Functioning in 911 Operators and Dispatchers" (2021). PCOM Psychology Dissertations. 568.