Publications and Research

Document Type

Article

Publication Date

2015

Abstract

Comments on an article by Jef Adriaenssens et al. (see record 2015-00662-015). In a recent review paper, Adriaenssens et al. concluded that about 26% of emergency nurses (EN) suffer from burnout and described their results as alarming. While commentators applaud Adriaenssens et al. efforts to provide a clearer picture of ill-health in EN, they thought that these authors' conclusions were weakened by a fundamental fact, namely, the absence of consensual, clinically valid diagnostic criteria for burnout. Trying to determine the prevalence of a condition that has no binding diagnostic criteria is problematic. Indeed, depending on how researchers decide to define (cases of) burnout, very different results can be obtained, and virtually any kind of conclusions can be drawn regarding the importance of the burnout phenomenon. Trying to determine the prevalence of a condition that has no binding diagnostic criteria is problematic. Indeed, depending on how researchers decide to define (cases of) burnout, very different results can be obtained, and virtually any kind of conclusions can be drawn regarding the importance of the burnout phenomenon.

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