Adaptation and Resilience Among Clinicians Under Missile Attack: Shared Traumatic Reality

Itay Pruginin, Patricia Findley, Richard Isralowitz, Alex Reznik

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

3 Scopus citations


Shared traumatic reality (STR) is when clinicians function as caregivers and are exposed to the same conditions as their patients. Since 2001, Israeli communities bordering Gaza (i.e., “Otef Gaza”) have experienced repeated missile attacks. Caregivers there have been exposed to trauma on two levels: (1) exposure to vicarious trauma through client interaction and (2) direct exposure resulting from their belonging to the communities affected. Two focus groups of mental health workers (n = 20) from Otef Gaza were conducted. The main theme that emerged was the perception of STR as an ongoing process of adaptation and change rather than a static condition. Participants noted the adaptation process encompass three foci: (1) intrapersonal, (2) clinicians’ spouses and family members, and (3) the broad working environment. Study results contribute to understanding resilience factors and addressing the needs of caregivers in STR conditions.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)684-700
Number of pages17
JournalInternational Journal of Mental Health and Addiction
Issue number3
StatePublished - 1 Jun 2017


  • Mental health professionals
  • Resilience
  • Shared traumatic/war reality
  • Terror exposure
  • Vicarious trauma

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Psychiatry and Mental health


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