Burnout of Nurses in Paediatric Hospitals

Introduction: Burnout is a syndrome characterized by emotional exhaustion, depersonalization and absence of a sense of personal accomplishment, which impacts adversely on the professional and personal life of the nurses. Aim: To investigate the level of burnout of nurses working in paediatric hospitals and the demographic and occupational factors that affect this burnout. Method: A cross-sectional study was conducted on a population of 240 nurses and nursing assistants working in three paediatric hospitals in Athens, the “Panagiotis and Aglaia Kyriakou” the “Aghia Sophia” and the Pentelis Children’s Hospital. Data were collected with the use of the Maslach Burnout Inventory. The Cronbach’s α internal consistency coefficient was 0.83. The data were collected during the period November 2010 to January 2011 and the response rate was 75% (240/320). Statistical analysis was performed using IBM SPSS Statistics 19.0 and included t test and analysis of variance. The statistical significance level was 0.05. Results: Nurses who came from areas outside of Athens showed a greater degree of burnout (p=0.04), emotional exhaustion (p=0.04) and depersonalization (p=0.003) compared with nurses who came from Athens. Nurses at the Pentelis Children’s Hospital showed less burnout (p=0.003), less emotional exhaustion (p=0.005) and less depersonalization (p=0.004) and recorded higher personal achievement scores (p=0.02) than nurses at the “Panagiotis and Aglaia Kyriakou” and “Aghia Sophia” Children’s Hospitals. Married nurses showed greater emotional exhaustion (p=0.04) and less depersonalization (p=0.03) than single nurses. Conclusions: The degree of burnout among nurses at paediatric hospitals was related to the specific hospital, place of origin and marital status.