Second Victim Experience



  • Date: Friday, November 8, 2019
  • Time: 8:30 a.m. to 3 p.m. Registration starts at 8:00 a.m.
  • Location:
    Saint Luke’s North Hospital – Barry Road
    5830 Northwest Barry Road
    Kansas City, MO 64154
  • Cost: $399 per person ($349 for each additional person from the same organization)
    Subscribers receive a 20% discount:  Log in to register and receive 20% discount

Download a Second Victims Training Workshop Flyer and Agenda

I’m so glad I attended the Second Victim Workshop sponsored by the Center for Patient Safety.  When I returned to work I met a surgical nurse walking  down the hall,  she asked me about the training I attended because she had seen my post Facebook of being in St. Louis. I told her what it was.  She already knew I am on Nebraska’s Critical Incident Stress Management team, so she proceeded to tell me about a couple incidents that happened years ago that still haunt her today. We discussed them for about 20 minutes.  As she spoke of the two incidents I could see and feel her pain but as she was able to tell her story she became more at ease and relaxed. For years she has had  reoccurring dreams and night sweats .  My hope is that those 20 minutes made a huge difference in her life going forward.  This is exactly why we need this In our hospitals. My heart is where it needs to be!  Thank you for all you do!

  • MARLENE WILLIAMS, Nebraska EMS Critical Incident Stress Management team member, EMT, Phelps Memorial Health Center, Holdrege NE

About Second Victims

Most health care providers adjust well to the multitude of demands encountered during an unexpected or traumatic clinical event. Providers often have strong emotional defenses that carry them through and let them “get the job done.” Yet sometimes the emotional aftershock (or stress reaction) can be difficult. Signs and symptoms of this emotional aftershock may last a few days, a few weeks, a few months, or longer.

Who is a Second Victim?

Second victims are “healthcare providers who are involved in an unanticipated adverse patient event, medical error and/or a patient related injury and become victimized in the sense that the provider is traumatized by the event.”

The second victim phenomenon can occur to any healthcare provider, in any organization, for example, hospitals, EMS, LTC, home health & hospice, pharmacies, medical offices and physicians, ASCs, etc.

Frequently, Second Victims…

  • Feel personally responsible for the unexpected patient outcomes
  • Feel as though they have failed the patient Second-guess their clinical skills
  • Second-guess their knowledge base

Second Victim Fast Facts

  • Each second victim (even those involved in the same event) will have unique experiences and needs
  • Regardless of job title, providers respond in predictable manners.The six stages of second victim recovery explain how the second victim is impacted by the clinical event.
  • There are some events that are high risk for inducing a second victim response
  • First tendency of providers is self isolation
  • Providers tend to ‘worry’ in a predictable pattern
  • Sometimes the entire team is impacted by a clinical event

CPS supports the Second Victim Program as another component on the path to culture improvement. While we often focus on the impact on family members of patients experiencing an adverse event, the care of our providers following an event is equally important.

Educational & Training Programs

In collaboration with the University of Missouri Health System Second Victim Program, the Center for Patient Safety supports the Second Victim Program and offers a day-long train-the-trainer program. The workshop from MU Health Care offers a way to learn more about the program developed in part by one of their own staff, Sue Scott, PhD, RN, Manager-Patient Safety and Risk Management at University of Missouri Health Care.

Check for upcoming webinars or workshop locations and dates.

The workshops provide insight into the experience as well as interventions of support and provide instruction so that each participant returns to their organization with the knowledge, skills, and techniques necessary to support and train their peers.

Sue Scott, PhD, RN currently serves as manager of Patient Safety and Risk Management at University of Missouri Health Care. She has experience in Neonatal Intensive Care, Neonatal-Pediatric Transport Services, Legal Nurse Consulting, Quality Improvement and Patient Safety. Dr. Scott’s research interests include understanding the second victim phenomenon in an attempt to develop effective institutional support networks to help meet interdisciplinary professionals support needs in the aftermath of unanticipated clinical outcomes and events. She is coordinator of the University of Missouri Health Care System’s peer support network, the forYOU Team and serves as Primary Investigator on several research projects focused on second victim support strategies. She has authored numerous articles and textbook chapters related to the topic of the second victim phenomenon. In addition, she has presented research findings locally, nationally and internationally on the topic of second victim support.

Learn More

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