Accession Number:

ADA571309

Title:

Main Sources of Occupational Stress and Symptoms of Burnout, Clinical Distress, and Post-Traumatic Stress Among Distributed Common Ground System Intelligence Exploitation Operators (2011 USAFSAM Survey Results)

Descriptive Note:

Final rept. Jun 2011-Jun 2012

Corporate Author:

AIR FORCE AEROSPACE MEDICAL RESEARCH LAB WRIGHT-PATTERSON AFB OH

Report Date:

2012-09-01

Pagination or Media Count:

25.0

Abstract:

Significant efforts have been made to address combat stress among personnel deployed or returning from deployment, but far less attention has been given to the deployed-in-garrison work environment of distributed common ground system DCGS intelligence exploitation operators, who remotely monitor and report real-time, hostile, enemy contact and facilitate redirection of ground forces to engage enemy combatants. As the eyes and ears of the battlefield, these personnel vicariously experience the combat environment on a daily basis. This study investigated the impact of the deployed-in-garrison environment by surveying DCGS intelligence exploitation personnel, DCGS system sustainment personnel, and noncombatant support and logistics airmen from the same installations. The survey included a demographic questionnaire, items assessing sources of stress, as well as standardized instruments assessing occupational burnout, clinical distress, post-traumatic stress disorder, as well as vicarious exposure to combat. The results of the study suggest that the primary sources of occupational stress for the DCGS intelligence exploitation personnel are operational in nature i.e., long hours, shift work, organizational and leadership difficulties, nature of work, additional workload, low manning and training challenges, and work-rest cycle management, and that these stressors contribute directly to high levels of emotional exhaustion and clinical distress. Additional research is required to more thoroughly understand the impact of the deployed-in-garrison, around-the-clock operations on the psychological health of DCGS intelligence exploitation operators.

Subject Categories:

  • Personnel Management and Labor Relations
  • Medicine and Medical Research
  • Stress Physiology

Distribution Statement:

APPROVED FOR PUBLIC RELEASE