Understanding the Second Victim Experience among Multidisciplinary Providers in Obstetrics and Gynecology

Enid Rivera-Chiauzzi, Robyn E. Finney, Kirsten A. Riggan, Amy L. Weaver, Margaret E. Long, Vanessa E. Torbenson, Megan A. Allyse

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Objective The aim of the study was to determine the prevalence of second victim experience (SVE) among obstetrics and gynecology (OBGYN) clinical and nonclinical healthcare workers and compare healthcare workers who did and did not identify as a second victim (SV) in the last year. Methods The validated Second Victim Experience and Support Tool and additional questions designed to explore SVE topics specific to OBGYN healthcare workers were administered to a multidisciplinary group. Results Of 571 individuals sent a survey link, 205 completed the survey: 117 worked in obstetrics (OB), 73 in gynecology (GYN), and 15 in both areas. Overall, 44.8% of respondents identified as an SV sometime during their career, 18.8% within the last 12 months. Among nonclinical staff respondents, 26.7% identified as an SV during their career and 13.3% in the last 12 months. Respondents who identified as an SV in the last 12 months reported experiencing significantly more psychological and physical distress, a greater degree to which colleague and institutional support were perceived as inadequate, decreased professional self-efficacy, and increased turnover intentions. The most common events identified as likely triggers for SVE were fetal or neonatal loss (72.7%) and maternal death (68.2%) in OB and patient accusations or complaints (69.3%) in GYN. Conclusions Among survey respondents, there was a high prevalence of SVs in OBGYN staff, distributed equally between OB and GYN. Nonclinical healthcare workers also identified as SVs. The OBGYN departments should consider using the Second Victim Experience and Support Tool to screen for potential SV among their healthcare workers to provide additional support after events.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)E463-E469
JournalJournal of patient safety
Issue number2
StatePublished - Mar 1 2022


  • burnout
  • peer support
  • second victim

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Leadership and Management
  • Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health


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