Needs and feelings of anxiety of relatives of patients hospitalized in intensive care units: implications for social work

Soc Work Health Care. 2002;35(4):21-40. doi: 10.1300/J010v35n04_02.


Introduction: This study explores the needs and anxiety levels of relatives faced with the stress of a family member's critical care hospitalization in relation to the relatives' age, gender, educational level and type of kinship with the patient and in relationship to the characteristics of the admission and the condition of the patient.

Methods: Participants were 200 relatives of 120 different critical care patients. Family needs were measured by means of the Critical Care Family Needs Inventory. Anxiety was measured by means of the State version of the State-Trait Anxiety Inventory.

Results and conclusion: Relatives' needs and anxiety levels are found to be significantly related to demographic variables and type of kinship with the patient. The implications for clinical practice are discussed.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Age Factors
  • Anxiety / diagnosis
  • Anxiety / etiology*
  • Anxiety / prevention & control*
  • Anxiety / psychology
  • Attitude to Health*
  • Belgium
  • Counseling
  • Critical Care / psychology*
  • Educational Status
  • Family / psychology*
  • Female
  • Hospitals, University
  • Humans
  • Intensive Care Units*
  • Job Description
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Needs Assessment / organization & administration*
  • Sex Factors
  • Social Support
  • Social Work / organization & administration*
  • Time Factors