Introduction: Dutch ICUs have been enrolled in network organisations since the Quality Standard of 2016. In networks, intensivists have to cooperate to provide a high quality of care for all patients in their network. Trust is essential to cooperate effectively in a network. It is unknown what the degree of trust is in Dutch ICU networks.
Methods: A survey was composed using the questionnaire by Cummings, measuring the experience of trust, and the questionnaire by Currall, measuring the willingness to show behaviour that is consistent with trust. Two overall questions concerning the feeling of being part of the network and the overall level of trust were added. All questions were answered on a 7-point Likert scale. Network managers passed the questionnaire to intensivists in the network.
Results: The overall level of trust showed a mean of 5.5 (SD 1.2), similar to the mean of the Cummings questionnaire (5.3; SD 0.9). Academic intensivists had a significantly higher level of trust than intensivists from other hospitals (5.9 vs 5.0 and 5.3; p=0.009). The questions covering ‘surveillance’, which measures the need for control, scored lowest with 3.8 (SD 1.3). Intensivists feel the need to make formal agreements and they experience a relatively intense need to control these agreements.
Conclusion: Intensivists experience a reasonable level of trust within their network. However, intensivists feel the need to make formal agreements and they experience a relatively intense need to control these agreements. This suggests that the actual trust is conditional. Academic intensivists showed the highest level of trust.
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