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Measuring workplace trauma response in Australian paramedics: an investigation into the psychometric properties of the Impact of Event Scale

Authors Hogan N, Costello S, Boyle M, Williams B

Received 18 September 2015

Accepted for publication 16 October 2015

Published 15 December 2015 Volume 2015:8 Pages 287—294

DOI https://doi.org/10.2147/PRBM.S96647

Checked for plagiarism Yes

Review by Single-blind

Peer reviewers approved by Dr Rebecca Sargisson

Peer reviewer comments 2

Editor who approved publication: Professor Igor Elman


Nicola Hogan,1 Shane Costello,1 Malcolm Boyle,2 Brett Williams2

1Faculty of Education, Monash University, Clayton, VIC, Australia; 2Department of Community Emergency Health and Paramedic Practice, Monash University, Frankston, VIC, Australia

Introduction: Investigation into the psychological effects of violence toward health care workers and its associated trauma is increasing. The Impact of Event Scale (IES) provides a measure of current, subjective, emotional distress symptomatic of a specific traumatic event. However, its validity among paramedics is largely unknown.
Problem: The purpose of this study was to investigate the psychometric properties and factor structure of the IES with a sample of Australian paramedics.
Methods: The study aimed to investigate the psychometric properties and factor structure of the 15-item IES with a sample of Australian paramedics using Exploratory Factor Analysis with model fit statistics as found in confirmatory analysis.
Results: Maximum Likelihood Factor Analysis with Varimax rotation supported the hypothesis that a two-factor solution would provide the best fit of the data. Procrustes rotation provided further support for this hypothesis indicating that the factors, labeled “Intrusion” and “Avoidance”, as well as the individual items of the 12-item final model, were a good fit to an ideal solution.
Conclusion: The revision of the scale has improved its validity for use in the general population of paramedics, improving the potential for its use in trauma-related research.

Keywords: impact of event scale, psychometrics, paramedics, occupational violence, PTSD

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