This paper presents a critique of the article by Chou, Li, and Hu (2014) entitled: “Job stress and burnout in hospital employees: Comparisons of different medical professions in a regional hospital in Taiwan.” The problem under the study is clearly stated. The authors assert that the work of health professionals is stressful as they have to react to the requirements of patients and their family members urgently, and any medical flaw can be costly, detrimental to the life of the patient, and at times irremediable (Sarafis et al., 2016). Exposure to job-associated strain for a long time results in burnout (Khamisa, Oldenburg, Peltzer, & Ilic, 2015). The problem is practically important as burnout does not just jeopardize the healthiness and welfare of health professionals, but also results in an increased rate of medical errors and poor quality of care.
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Purpose and Variables
The purpose of the study was to evaluate and compare the incidence of job stress and burnout among health professionals. The authors failed in defining the key terms employed in the study, which could have made it easier to understand the significance of the research. The study does not explicitly outline the hypothesis, and the reader only grasps it from a general understanding of the article: the findings will enhance the development of successful approaches of stress lessening programs in health facilities. The significance of the study is to investigate the associated aspects that lead to burnout in the operations of caregivers. Apart from the purpose is clearly defined, the researchers identify and refine the dependent, independent, and demographic variables.
Review of the Literature
Since Chou et al. (2014) have not separated the introduction and literature review with the help of clear-cut subheadings within the article, the two sections appear contiguous. Apart from just four sources, the researchers draw on a wide pool of recent references that are pertinent to the study to come up with a relevant and concise but too narrow review. Apart from just in the review of the literature, the authors have relied on an extensive list of references all through the study. There is no evidence of bias, as the review is directly associated with the development of the research.
The methodology of the study is quantitative, and the research design is a cross-sectional study. The study progression and design are compatible with study purpose and structure since the quality of the research appears to depend on the quantitative approach and the selection of the used instruments. This is an original study, and its quantitative methodology provides a more enhanced standard of evidence with facilitated replication and rigor as compared to a qualitative approach.
Though the study sample (1329 health professionals) is of sufficient size and representative of the target population, the researchers chose not to use any inclusion and exclusion criteria and instead encouraged voluntary participation on the condition that the participants finish the questionnaire. All the approaches and strategies employed were ethical, and sampling was performed by choosing to recruit the participants from a regional teaching hospital.
Strategies, Reliability, and Validity
The researchers evidently discussed and consistently employed the approaches for the manipulation of the independent variables. Making the questionnaire anonymous was an effective way of protecting the participants. The dependent variables are job stress and burnout, the independent variables are medical professionals (who encompassed 570 nurses), and demographic variables are age, sex, work conditions (for instance, position, working hours, and length of the shifts), education level, and marital status. The use of a questionnaire in data collection and SPSS in statistical analysis is an appropriate form of reliability and enhancement of content validity as the instruments have been widely deemed effective.
Statistical procedures were appropriate for the research as the content analysis was undertaken to examine the connections amid independent variables with respect to burnout in an effort of preventing a multicollinearity issue in the multiple regression study (Van Bogaert, Kowalski, Weeks, & Clarke, 2013). The test values for the statistical analysis, the issues associated with work-linked burnout, were clearly outlined, and the significance level set at p<0.05. Validity and reliability of the quantitative procedures were facilitated by the use of the questionnaire and SPSS software, where multiple regression analysis was carried out to establish the factors that influence job-related burnout.
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Every calculation in the analysis of the quantitative data was done using the SPSS software. The findings supported the hypothesis and purpose as they showed that being youthful, operating as a nurse, overtime, stressful experiences, overcommitment, and poor social backing increased burnout. Despite the strengths of the study, the problems and weaknesses were pointed out. Other research findings that support the results are that nursing is a challenging health profession, and increased experience makes nurses cope with the arising difficulties (Maruyama, Suzuki, & Takayama, 2016).
Limitations and Implications
Some of the limitations of this research are that working with participants from just a single regional hospital affected the generalizability of the outcomes, and a cross-sectional design resulted in a poor causal inference hence warranting a longitudinal follow-up to boost the relationships. The implication for practice and future research is that increasing the number of health professionals will eradicate problems such as operating in long shifts and having a lot of tasks, which are some common problems that result in burnout among medical professionals (Boev, 2012). The conclusions of the study are linked to the initial purpose. In conclusion, I would use this article in my practice as it presents a positive appreciation of medical operations and calls for future research into ways of easing the pains of nurses.
Boev, C. (2012). The relationship between nurses’ perception of work environment and patient satisfaction in adult critical care. Journal of Nursing Scholarship, 44(4), 368-375.
Chou, L. P., Li, C. Y., & Hu, S. C. (2014). Job stress and burnout in hospital employees: Comparisons of different medical professions in a regional hospital in Taiwan. BMJ Open, 4(2), 1-6.
Khamisa, N., Oldenburg, B., Peltzer, K., & Ilic, D. (2015). Work related stress, burnout, job satisfaction and general health of nurses. International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health, 12(1), 652-666.
Maruyama, A., Suzuki, E., & Takayama, Y. (2016). Factors affecting burnout in female nurses who have preschool‐age children. Japan Journal of Nursing Science, 13(1), 123-134.
Sarafis, P., Rousaki, E., Tsounis, A., Malliarou, M., Lahana, L., Bamidis, P., & Papastavrou, E. (2016). The impact of occupational stress on nurses’ caring behaviors and their health related quality of life. BMC Nursing, 15(1), 56.
Van Bogaert, P., Kowalski, C., Weeks, S. M., & Clarke, S. P. (2013). The relationship between nurse practice environment, nurse work characteristics, burnout and job outcome and quality of nursing care: A cross-sectional survey. International Journal of Nursing Studies, 50(12), 1667-1677.