For healthcare workers, declining staff numbers means added shifts, responsibilities and stress. These pressures have contributed to the growing number of nurses experiencing burnout. Without addressing the issue, healthcare organizations will continue to encounter staff turnover, especially for nurses.
Burnout, a medically recognized state of emotional and physical exhaustion caused by prolonged stress, can happen to anyone at any time — but it’s especially common in the medical field. Unfortunately, because nurses often work behind the scenes, we may be slow to identify signs of burnout, so it’s imperative that employers be vigilant and provide support proactively.
Burnout leads to mistakes, and as morale of nurses drops and discontent in the job grows, patient care suffers. Medical error is now the third most common cause of death in the U.S., according to an article in The BMJ. In addition, nurses’ engagement is the No. 1 predictor of patient mortality in hospitals, according to Gallup News.
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