Factors Influencing Perceived Effectiveness in Dealing with Self-harming Patients in a Sample of Emergency Department Staff

The Journal of Emergency Medicine, 04/27/2012

Egan R et al. – The findings have implications for psycho–education and training content for staff. The findings suggest that increasing knowledge of self–harm and confidence in dealing with self–harming patients can lead to more positive perceived personal effectiveness in responding to clients' needs.


  • One hundred twenty-five ED medical staff (28 doctors and 97 nurses) from five EDs in the West and South of Ireland completed a questionnaire.
  • Predictor variables included in the design, and informed by past research, included knowledge of self-harm and suicidal behavior and confidence in dealing with incidents of self-harm.


  • Standard multiple regression suggested a statistically significant model fit between the two predictors and the criterion variable, accounting for 24% of total variance.
  • Knowledge and Confidence were significant contributors to perceived personal effectiveness in dealing with self-harming patients.

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