Burnout is widespread among both NICU nurses, neonatologists, and other caregivers.
As many as 40% of hospital nurses exhibit symptoms of burnout ¹ and rates of burnout reported by healthcare workers in 44 NICUs ranged from 7.5% to 54.4%, with rates being higher in non-physicians. ²
Neonatologists are not immune to burnout, though. One study of 110 neonatologists found that 30% experienced high burnout and another 60-65% were in the “at risk” range. ³
As NICU staff, we work in one of the highest stress areas of the hospital and we need support, too, in order to minimize our chances of getting burnout.
Read more about the importance of staff support in the Workgroup’s paper, “Recommendations for enhancing psychosocial support of NICU parents through staff education and support.” Only by taking care of ourselves and our fellow staff members will we, as caregivers, be able to give to the families who need our attention so much.
1. Aiken L, Clarke S, Sloane D, Sochalski J, Busse R, Clarke H et al. Nurses’ reports on hospital care in five countries. Health Aff 2001; 20: 43–53.
2. Profit J, Sharek P, Amspoker A, Kowalkowski M, Nisbet C, Thomas E et al. Burnout in the NICU setting and its relation to safety culture. BMJ Qual Saf 2014; 10: 806–13.
3. Bellieni C, Righetti P, Ciampa R. Assessing burnout among neonatologists. J Matern Fetal Neonatal Med 2010; 25(10): 2130–4.