Burnout Questionnaire Results
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Burnout Questionnaire Results

Increasing evidence suggests that physicians are experiencing epidemic levels of burnout, dissatisfaction, and work-related stress. Increasing productivity requirements, regulation and bureaucracy in combination with decreasing compensation, less time with patients, a rapidly expanding base of medical knowledge, and difficulty balancing personal and professional life because of excessive work hours and frequent night calls are all contributing factors.

Our specialty is one of the more stressful ones and from time to time it is our obligation to pause and reflect, to ensure that our mental well-being and that of our colleagues remains a priority.

We felt the need as an Association to take stock of the situation amongst Anaesthesiologists practicing in Malta. In October 2016, we asked our members to fill in an anonymous burnout questionnaire. This questionnaire is derived directly from a validated tool that has been already employed by other Anaesthesiology societies in relation to establishing the level of burnout amongst their members.

Question Not At All (%) Rarely (%) Some Times (%) Often (%) Very Often (%)
Do you feel run down and drained of physical or emotional energy? 4 6 48 25 17
Do you find that you are prone to negative thinking about your job? 16 23 35 20 6
Do you find that you are harder and less sympathetic with people than perhaps they deserve? 9.6 30.8 48.1 7.7 3.8
Do you find yourself getting easily irritated by small problems, or by your co-workers and team? 11.5 19.2 38.6 19.2 11.5
Do you feel misunderstood or unappreciated by your co-workers? 3.5 21.2 42.3 21.2 11.5
Do you feel that you have no-one to talk to? 23 29 27 4 16
Do you feel that you are achieving less than you should? 4 23 44 19 10
Do you feel under an unpleasant level of pressure to succeed?  15 23 29 17 15
Do you feel that you are not getting what you want out of your job? 15 23 39 12 12
Do you feel that you are in the wrong organization or the wrong profession? 40 25 21 6 8
Are you becoming frustrated with parts of your job? 8 14 50 17 12
Do you feel that organizational politics or bureaucracy frustrate your ability to do a good job?  8  8  27  25 33
Do you feel that there is more work to do than you practically have the ability to do? 10 15 38 23 13
Do you feel that you do not have time to do many of the things that are important to doing a good quality job? 14 44 19 23
Do you find that you do not have time to plan as much as you would like to? 10 15 33 27 15

52 anaesthetists out of a total of 101 anaesthetists and anaesthetic trainees filled in the questionnaire and the results can be seen below.

For each question, the answer carries the following weight:

Answer Weight
Not at all: 0
Rarely 1
Sometimes 2
Often 3
Very Often 4

The risk of burnout is as follows:

>=5 Little sign of burnout here, unless some factors are particularly severe (19.5%)

>=18 At risk of burnout, particularly if several scores are high (40%)

>=35 Severe risk of burnout – do something about this urgently (25%)

>=45 Very severe risk of burnout – do something about this urgently (15.5%)

The results for each member show that more than 80% of respondentsare at risk of burnout.