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Burnout has elicited growing interest among occupational health specialists in recent decades. Since 2019, the World Health Organization has characterized burnout as a syndrome resulting from chronic, unmanageable workplace stress. According to the ICD-11, three symptoms define the entity: feelings of exhaustion, increased mental distance from one’s job, and a sense of ineffectiveness at work, all of which correspond to the structure of the Maslach Burnout Inventory. The ICD-11 includes burnout among the factors that influence health status. This paper calls into question that conceptualization based on a number of lines of evidence. The evidence includes the following: burnout was predefined before systematic, replicable research on the construct was conducted; the symptom picture is clinically and theoretically ill-founded; and because of the high correlation of the exhaustion core of burnout with depressive symptoms, the burnout label can mask a serious depressive condition.


Bianchi, R., & Schonfeld, I. S. (2023). Examining the evidence base for burnout. Bulletin of the World Health Organization, 101, 743-745.



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