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The Problem of Burnout of Medical Specialists


Nowadays, medical professionals face many various challenges. One of the most obvious and critical problems is emotional burnout, which is becoming more common among specialists. It is described as the emotional exhaustion of an employee and the formation of negative and negative tendencies towards work and colleagues. Moreover, there may be problems with the quality of training and provision of services. This work is aimed at assessing the articles that identify and examine changes, such as mindfulness-based practices, that can contribute to solving this problem.

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Impact of the Problem on the Patient

The problem of burnout of medical specialists can become critical and have negative consequences for both employees and clinical organization, as well as for patients. They can decrease job satisfaction and contribute to negative consequences for the patient. Research underlines that “burnout has been linked to suboptimal patient care resulting in lower patient satisfaction, 8−12 impaired quality of care” (De Hert, 2020, p. 171). Thus, this phenomenon can seriously affect the reduction of patient safety, an increase in the number of medical errors, and a deterioration in the quality of medical care. As a result, the degree of dissatisfaction with patients and a decrease in the reputation of the medical institution may also increase.

Impact of the Problem on the Organization

An institution that provides health-related services may also be at risk if staff burnout occurs. One of the consequences may be dissatisfaction with the workplace and the process of providing assistance, poor quality of medical care, professional mistakes, or absenteeism. Moreover, burnout significantly negatively affects labor productivity and contributes to a deterioration in the level of the organizational commitment. This factor can lead to staff turnover and a decrease in the competitiveness of a medical organization.

The PICO components

  • P – Healthcare workers
  • I – Implementing a mindfulness training program
  • C – No mindfulness training program
  • O – Decrease in healthcare worker burnout

Evidence-Based Practice Question

Would implementing a mindfulness training program compared to no mindfulness training program lead to decreased burnout among healthcare workers?

Research Article

“A randomized controlled trial of mindfulness to reduce stress and burnout among intern medical practitioners” by Michael J. Ireland, Bonnie Clough, Kim Gill, Fleur Langan, Angela O’Connor, and Lyndall Spencer.

Background Introduction

The purpose of this article was to examine the effectiveness and efficiency of the implementation of a change program based on awareness. These measures are aimed at reducing the level of stress and burnout among medical professionals who work in the emergency department. The main expected results were the monitoring of the health care workers who participate in the implementation of conscious practices. They will provide data on reducing stress and the problem of emotional burnout before and after the program. Therefore, this study evaluated mindfulness-based interventions to see if they reduced levels of stress and burnout for doctors in an emergency room. Negative consequences involving stress and burnout can impact healthcare workers, the work process, and patients.


This study involved 44 doctors randomly assigned to the control or intervention group. The Copenhagen Burnout Inventory and Perceived Stress Scale questionnaires were used before, midway, and after the study.

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Level of Evidence

This research is a level 1 quantitative research study using a random control trial that included an intervention/treatment and a control group assigned randomly.

Data Analysis

The authors used the Copenhagen Burnout Inventory (CBI) and the Perceived Stress Scale (PSS) questionnaires to measure burnout and stress. The questionnaires were distributed at three different times during the study. Descriptive statistics were used for control of each condition and intervention groups (burnout and stress). The researchers also used multilevel analysis, with time being the random factor and condition being a fixed factor for the control and intervention groups to get parameter estimates. Simple effects analysis showed that the intervention group had significant change and the control group did not.

Ethical Considerations

The participants were asked to be involved in the study, and all expressed interest and signed consent. Ethical approval was obtained from the study’s institution.

Quality Rating

This research is of A quality that had 44 participants selected randomly into either the control or intervention group.

Analysis of the Results/Conclusions

The result of the study showed mindfulness training did reduce stress and burnout for those in the intervention group compared to the control group. This research supports the EBP question that having a mindfulness training intervention program decreased feelings of burnout compared to no program for healthcare workers.

Nonresearch Article (Title of Article)

“An evaluation of a mindfulness-based stress reduction intervention for critical care nursing staff: A quality improvement project” by Anderson, N.

Background Introduction

This source sets its main task to evaluate the mindfulness based stress reduction course as a measure to implement quality improvement methods in the adult critical care unit. As a hypothesis, it was deduced that medical specialists undergoing this program can significantly improve the quality of life and reduce stress at work. Moreover, the study assessed the degree of awareness and the limitation of cases of poor-quality care, which will reduce the incidence rates and skipping or dismissal from work. Further, mindfulness programs may help reduce stress and burnout. This initiative will see how mindfulness-based interventions affect nurses and if it helps decrease stress, burnout, and absence rate.

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Type of Evidence

Nine Zen meditation teachers took part in this scientific work, who conducted training for eight weeks under the Mindfulness Based Stress Reduction program. This intervention was aimed at familiarizing participants with mindfulness using online tools. This nonresearch article is a quality improvement project that used three questionnaires-the mindful attention awareness scale (MAAS), perceived stress scale (PSS), and satisfaction with life scale (SWLS) at three different intervals, collected anonymously, and the quantitative data analyzed.

Level of Evidence

This paper is a level 5 quality improvement project.

Quality Rating

This study is A quality nonresearch article involving four critical care nursing units in a large hospital.

Author’s Recommendations

The satisfaction scores on the perceived stress scale, mindfulness attention awareness scale, and satisfaction with life scale improved. The author recommends that critical care nurses benefit from mindfulness training and have positive outcomes for patients and staff. This nonresearch paper supports my EBP question that mindfulness training did show improved scores in mindfulness-awareness and perceived stress compared to no training for healthcare workers.

Recommended Practice Change

I recommend implementing a mindfulness training intervention class for healthcare workers to help decrease burnout in our organization. The results from the research article confirmed that those who participated in the mindfulness training program reported increased improvement in stress and burnout than the control group (Anderson, 2021). In addition, the nonresearch article showed positive correlations when comparing pre and post-course scores in perceived stress and mindfulness awareness (Ireland et al., 2017). The types of such an approach that can be sufficiently effective in combating burnout of medical personnel can be the mindfulness-based stress reduction technique and mindfulness-based cognitive therapy. In addition, these methods also include dialectical behavioral therapy and acceptance and commitment therapy.

The main goal of implementing such measures in a clinical organization is to create an open and accepting awareness of a person’s thoughts and feelings. Moreover, these components also include an attentive and deliberate attitude to patterns of thinking and bodily experiences when anxiety or depression occurs (Ying et al., 2018). Therefore, mindfulness training intervention class implies a combination of relaxation, acceptance of sensory perception. All these actions can help employees in the process of accepting themselves and fighting burnout and also contribute to focusing on the experience with acceptance and curiosity.

To better apply the implementation of changing practices, it is necessary to involve key stakeholders. One of these stakeholders is directly the medical institution in which the process of change is taking place. Others are external stakeholders, such as patients and, for example, financial organizations, that is, special instruction. These three participants play a special role, as they can provide the necessary resources. Their involvement can be carried out by means of negotiations and indications of how the issue of burnout plays in the process of providing medical care. A specific obstacle may be resistance on the part of employees who are struggling with the problem under discussion. The result of the EBP question to evaluate the recommended change in practice will be a reduction in the level of burnout among the staff of the medical organization.

Key Stakeholders

The first stakeholder will be staff education, and their role will be to provide instruction on mindfulness training programs to all healthcare workers at our facility. The second stakeholder will be the healthcare workers themselves, and their role will be to commit to the mindfulness training program process. The third stakeholder will be the organization, whose responsibility will be to support the practice change financially.

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Barrier to Implementation

One barrier to implementation will be financial. For example, the costs of initiating a new education program and training healthcare workers could be high.

Strategy to Overcome the Implementation Barrier

A strategy to overcome the financial barrier would be to present the research on how implementing a mindfulness program leads to increased staff satisfaction and decreased turnover rates leading to increased cost savings for the organization with reduced new employee hiring and orientation/training costs.

Indicator to Measure the Outcome

Monitor the MAAS (mindful awareness attention scale) questionnaire results for improved scores/decrease burnout before training, 4-month interval, and 1-year interval. Therefore, this scientific work examines the effectiveness of implementing change programs to combat burnout and high level of stress in medical professionals. The study analyzed two articles that provided information about the practice of mindfulness-based interventions. This measure helps to cope with stress at work, which can result in a decrease in the quality of services, the appearance of absenteeism, and staff turnover. Moreover, ignoring the problem of burnout can negatively affect not only employees but also the medical organization. Thus, the competitive position of the organization and the deterioration of its reputation may decrease.


Anderson, N. (2021). An evaluation of a mindfulness-based stress reduction intervention for critical care nursing staff: A quality improvement project. Nursing in Critical Care, 26(6), 441–448. Web.

De Hert, S. (2020). Burnout in healthcare workers: prevalence, impact and preventative strategies. Local and Regional Anesthesia, 13, 171. Web.

Ireland, M. J., Clough, B., Gill, K., Langan, F., O’Connor, A., & Spencer, L. (2017). A randomized controlled trial of mindfulness to reduce stress and burnout among intern medical practitioners. Medical Teacher, 39(4), 409–414. Web.

Ying, C., Liu, C. J., He, J., & Wang, J. (2018). Academic stress and evaluation of a mindfulness training intervention program. NeuroQuantology, 16(5). Web.

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