The aim of this qualitative research is to explore the perception of the organizational climate in Italian cancer units. The survey was the first step of a two year action-research project, involving 14 hospitals and different professions (n=475). We report the methodology and the thematic clusters that emerged in analysing the answers to three questions: (i) perceived problems with colleagues, (ii) perceived problems with patients and their relatives, and (iii) coping strategies. Narratives were analysed through computer aided qualitative data analysis software. The results identify two main significant issues in describing problems and solutions: interpersonal communication and group cohesiveness.


Cancer, Communication, Content Analysis, Health Psychology, Narrative CBT

Author Bio(s)

Simone Cheli, PsyD., is chief of research at the Psycho-oncology Unit, Department of Oncology, Central Tuscany Healthcare District, in Florence and professor of general pedagogy at the School of Human Health Sciences of the University of Florence. He is also member of the MetaEs, the Laboratory of Methods of Analysis of Illness Experiences at the School of Education and Psychology of the University of Florence and director of the Center for Psychology and Health at the Tages Charity in Florence. His research interests are in the field of psycho-oncology, organizational psychology and narrative approaches in dealing with patients and professionals. Correspondence regarding this article can be addressed directly to: Simone Cheli, SOS Psiconcologia, Dipartimento Oncologico, Ospedale Santa Maria Annunziata, via dell'Antella, 58, 50137, Bagno a Ripoli, Firenze, Italy. Email: simone.cheli@unifi.it

Luca Pezzullo, Ph.D., works at the University of Padua, where he lectured Clinical Research Methodology classes in post-graduate courses. Consultant for the Italian Government, as Expert Psychologist for the Civil Protection Department, and for the UN-World Health Organization, as Research Supervisor, he also worked for the R&D Department of “Action Contre la Faim” NGO. He has published books and articles on methodological issues in psychological research, and disaster mental health issues.

Francesco Velicogna, PsyD, is a founding partner and professor of psychotherapy at the Institute of Constructivst Psychology in Padua and vice-director of the Center for Psychology and Health at the Tages Charity in Florence. His research and clinical interests lie in the fields of constructivist psychology, psycho-oncology and psychotherapy. He has focused on the application of constructivist epistemology in healthcare management and professional training.

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