Burnout is identified as a combination of emotional exhaustion, depersonalization, and a sense of decreased personal achievement. In a perspective article Bianchi, Schonfeld, and Laurent (2015) argue that burnout is not a separately identifiable condition, but simply a depression that is caused by work (Bianchi, et al, 2015).Regardless of whether one defines burnout as a separate condition or depression from occupational stresses, burnout has negative consequences for the individual experiencing the symptoms, as well as the medical industry as a whole.
Although professional burnout is not unique to the PA profession, there is a need for better understanding of the magnitude of burnout in the profession, and the effects of burnout on PAs both personally and professionally. Each member of the healthcare team provides unique contributions and responsibilities in the delivery of health care services resulting in differing stressors that might contribute to the risk of burnout. Available research studies specific to burnout in the PA profession are not as prevalent as studies of burnout in physicians. While there are differences in professional roles, there are enough commonalities between physicians and PAs in stressors that may lead to burnout that some data from physician burnout studies can be extrapolated to address burnout in PAs.
This study evaluates available research on burnout in PAs. This study will analyze the causes and extent of burnout within the PA profession, the negative effects of burnout for PAs, and the interventional modalities that might minimize the risk of burnout for PAs.
A'Belle D. Going Down in Flames: Provider Burnout, The Cost of Burnout to the Provider, Medical Industry, and Patients. University of Lynchburg DMSc Doctoral Project Assignment Repository. 2019; 1(1).
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