- Paperback: 128 pages
- Publisher: CRC Press; 1 edition (March 28, 2013)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 146658341X
- ISBN-13: 978-1466583412
- Product Dimensions: 6.1 x 0.3 x 9.2 inches
- Shipping Weight: 8 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
- Average Customer Review: 10 customer reviews
Amazon Best Sellers Rank:
#384,291 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
- #44 in Books > Engineering & Transportation > Engineering > Industrial, Manufacturing & Operational Systems > Ergonomics
- #142 in Books > Engineering & Transportation > Engineering > Industrial, Manufacturing & Operational Systems > Health & Safety
- #143 in Books > Science & Math > Technology > Safety & Health
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Second Victim: Error, Guilt, Trauma, and Resilience 1st Edition
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"With Dekker’s books there is always a thought-provoking central theme. … Part of the effectiveness of this book is in its inclusion of the reader – I felt as if I was being guided through my own thoughts, rather than someone else’s words. … I cannot recommend this book enough, especially if you work in systems design or organisational culture. It is easy to read, but may leave you with more questions than it answers. I do not think that is a bad thing."
―Ella-Mae Hubbard, Loughborough University, Loughborough, UK
Top customer reviews
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Thanks Doctor Dekker!
I found the book clearly written and concise. It only takes a few hours to read, as it's fairly short in length. It's something you could leave on the shelf at a hospital or police department for supervisors to understand and to refer to on those bad days.
What this book isn't is the therapy itself. It does discuss the overarching issue in our society, where human beings who are relied upon when the stakes are high make a mistake, the entire problem is summed up by blaming that person. Indeed the person themselves will blame themselves. In this system, the real problems with our emergency response are eclipsed by the blame game. And this system causes this emergency responder to face an unmet need for support. They are considered the ultimate problem, not the second victim. Even when we try to avoid that, it's nearly inevitable.
It's sobering to read about the examples in the book. Fortunately the main focus of this book is practical answers for this second victim. There are several options provided, with a good summary of how they can help.
Reading this book will give you an understanding of where you can turn when you or someone you work with is in this terrible situation. If you are a police officer, an EMT, a fire fighter, or work with such people, you will find this book has better prepared you to help.
If you are seeking a book that actually has some sort of 10 steps of recovery or hundreds of pages of discussion of accidents made in the desperate service of others, this book is not going to be what you wanted. Truth is, I am skeptical of someone in need of this sort of help 'going it alone' and not getting some professional help. My hope is that their supervisors will have read this book or one like it.
It makes perfect sense to have a book written for these victims. These people deal with fear, guilt, anger, embarrassment, depression, and humiliation after an event, feelings that can linger for very long periods, thanks to the internet. In our libelous society, finding and placing blame is often more important than helping these victims, and this is where this book comes in handy. Medical doctors, nurses and interns do not get much second-victim training during their schooling and are often left to deal with their guilt without any professional help.
This is a short, scholarly endeavor. The author provides for many real examples of second victims, citing studies from hospitals and airlines. These victims cope alone, and when they run out of coping skills, often take their own lives. Trauma and guilt overwhelm them. Often it is the guilt that differentiates the suffering between first and second victims.
The chapters are short and concise. Chapter 4, "Investigation," is unique to second victims because they feel powerless during the process and have no control of the outcome. I find this chapter especially important to understand for everyone involved, because rumors and reputations are damaged during this procedure. The investigators have to analyze and conclude an event without having witnessed the event first-hand. Sidney Dekker calls this "Controlling Hindsight." This can be very problematic and cause feelings of unfairness or injustice by the second victim. There is some legal advice here, but Dekker also focuses on emotional and psychological advice, aiming to allow the second victim to overcome the trauma, shame and guilt of the event.
This book is aimed at managers in health care, (air) travel and law enforcement, but anyone involved in second victimhood will benefit from this quick, concise and informative read.
What is the nature of error? If something was an accident, why do we blame the operator? What's the difference between guilt and shame? How does PTSD affect second victims? What does Just Culture mean when people are dead? What can we learn from second victims? And if we really plan for second victims can resilient safety organizations move towards reducing the number of first victims?
It's all written by a psychology professor specializing in safety systems who also has flown as a jet airliner pilot. He's written many other books, most all of them meaningfully informative, detailed, well-researched yet provocatively modern. This is no exception. Fully referenced and indexed. Highly recommended for safety professionals, accident investigators, university researchers, and mangers in high-risk fields such as medicine, policing and aviation.
Most recent customer reviews
One section I really appreciated was on how to handle investigations.Read more