Burnout and perceptions of conscience among health care personnel: A pilot study

Nursing Ethics 17 (1):23-38 (2010)
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Although organizational and situational factors have been found to predict burnout, not everyone employed at the same workplace develops it, suggesting that becoming burnt out is a complex, multifaceted phenomenon. The aim of this study was to elucidate perceptions of conscience, stress of conscience, moral sensitivity, social support and resilience among two groups of health care personnel from the same workplaces, one group on sick leave owing to medically assessed burnout (n = 20) and one group who showed no indications of burnout (n = 20). The results showed that higher levels of stress of conscience, a perception of conscience as a burden, having to deaden one’s conscience in order to keep working in health care and perceiving a lack of support characterized the burnout group. Lower levels of stress of conscience, looking on life with forbearance, a perception of conscience as an asset and perceiving support from organizations and those around them (social support) characterized the non-burnout group



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