Title page for ETD etd-09102007-100202

Document Type Master's Dissertation
Author Muller, Corne
URN etd-09102007-100202
Document Title Die impak van trauma op die kind as sekondÍre slagoffer in die ongevalle afdeling van Ďn hospitaal (Afrikaans)
Degree MSD (Social Health Care)
Department Social Work and Criminology
Advisor Name Title
Dr C L Carbonatto
  • traumaterapie
  • trauma
  • secondary trauma
  • skondÍre trauma
  • debriefing
  • ontlonting
  • emergency room
  • ongevalle afdeling
  • middle childhood
  • middelkinderjare
  • medical social work
  • mediese maatskaplike werk
  • child
  • kind
  • traumatherapy
  • traumatized child
  • getrauamatiseerde kind
  • biopsychosocial model
  • biopsigososiale model
Date 2006-07-27
Availability restricted
This study is aimed at exploring the impact of secondary trauma on the child. A shortcoming has been identified in practice because of the lack of trained social workers and therapists in the field of secondary trauma and children and applying effective therapeutic intervention.

The goal of this study was to explore and determine the impact of trauma on the child as the secondary victim in the emergency room of the hospital.

In order to reach the required goal, a number of objectives were set. By means of a literature study and consultation with experts in the field of trauma, a theoretical framework was set up with regard to the following: secondary trauma as phenomenon; the child in the middle childhood as part of life; trauma debriefing and the child.

An empirical study where semi-structured interviews and participatory observation were used as the methods of data collection was undertaken, to assess the impact of trauma on the child, as the secondary victim in the emergency room of the hospital. The following aspects were handled specifically:

1. the experience of trauma by the child

2. fears and anxiety

3. re-experiencing the event through thoughts

4. sensation, communication and play

5. increase in sensitivity through sight, noises and smell

6. avoidance of memories, thoughts and feelings towards the trauma and then the search for closure

Individual semi-structured interviews were used with ten respondents. Applied research was undertaken as the researcher aimed at establishing solutions for problems that occur in the emergency room of the hospital. The researcher used a qualitative research approach.

Considering that in this study a relatively unknown field was researched, a phenomenological strategy within an exploratory study was used to explore, understand and interpret the research question, which is not well known. The research question formulated for this study was: ďWhat is the effect of trauma on the child as the secondary victim?Ē

Empirical data, which was obtained by using a semi-structured interview schedule and participatory observation, revealed the following:

1. The secondary traumatized child is the individual thatís been exposed to the trauma by either witnessing the event or through the relationship with the victim.

2. The following phases of trauma were identified through the study of the secondary traumatized child:

i. PHASE 1 : Biological impact phase

ii. PHASE 2 : Reaction phase

iii. PHASE 3 : Avoidance phase iv. PHASE 4 : Reintegration and recovery of homeostasis

3. Role of social support systems for the adaptation of the psycho-social functioning of the victim.

4. External factors that might influence the traumatized child.

The study revealed information on the child as the secondary traumatized victim in the emergency room of the hospital, which holds further research possibilities. The desired information was acquired and can be used in further studies and the development of a trauma-debriefing programme.

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