In March 2017, our ALiEM Wellness Think Tank launched an ambitious initiative to try to identify the prevalence rate of U.S. emergency medicine (EM) resident burnout across the country. No study to date had been done to assess this. Amazingly we got a response from over 1,500 confirmed U.S. EM residents from 193 residency programs purely through our social media, email listservs, and Wellness Think Tank outreach efforts. We measured burnout using the Maslach Burnout Inventory-Human Services Survey (MBI-HSS). This 22-item MBI-HSS is the most common, validated tool used to measure burnout in healthcare professionals. It assesses 3 subscale domains:
- Emotional exhaustion (EE), which means being emotionally depleted at work
- Depersonalization (DP), which means a lack of feelings or negative, cynical feelings towards others
- Personal accomplishment (PA), which is a positive sense of self-evaluation and success at work.
A combination of high EE, high DP, and/or low PA scores are correlated with burnout.1,2 This post reviews some of the highlights from our study, High Prevalence of Burnout among Emergency Medicine Residents across the US, which was recently accepted by Annals of Emergency Medicine and published online.3