Application of the reina trust and betrayal model to the experience of pediatric critical care clinicians

Cynda Hylton Rushton, Michelle L. Reina, Christopher Francovich, Phyllis Naumann, Dennis S. Reina

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

3 Scopus citations


Background Trust is essential in the workplace, yet no systematic studies of trust among pediatric critical care professionals have been done. Objective To determine the feasibility of measuring trust in a pediatric intensive care unit by using established scales from the corporate world and to determine what behaviors build, break, and rebuild trust. Methods The Reina Trust and Betrayal Model was used to explore contractual, competence, and communication trust. Nurses and physicians in a pediatric intensive care unit completed online surveys to measure organizational, team, and patient trust. Quantitative data from 3 standard survey instruments and qualitative responses to 3 open-ended questions were analyzed and compared. Results Quantitative data from all 3 instruments indicated moderate to high levels of trust; scores for competence and contractual trust were higher than scores for communication trust. Scores indicated agreement on behaviors that build trust, such as pointing out risky situations to each other, actively striving to build supportive and productive relationships, and giving and receiving constructive feedback. Foremost among trust-breaking behaviors was gossip, which was more troublesome to respondents with longer experience in critical care. Responses to the open-ended questions underscored these themes. The most frequently cited items included encouraging mutually serving intentions, sharing information, and involving and seeking the input of others. Conclusion The Reina trust scales and open-ended questions are feasible and applicable to pediatric critical care units, and data collected with these instruments are useful in determining what behaviors build, break, and rebuild trust among staff.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)e41-e51
JournalAmerican Journal of Critical Care
Issue number4
StatePublished - Jul 2010

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Critical Care


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