The number of Registered Nurses (RNs) in the United States (U.S.) is roughly three times that of physicians and surgeons, making RNs a critically important component of the U.S. healthcare system. RN Burnout – defined as the feeling of exhaustion from working long hours without rest – is a real concern, having been reported in many hospitals. The purpose of this research is to examine the causes and consequences of Burnout Syndrome among RNs in U.S. hospitals, in order to identify solutions to this problem. The methodology involves a review of the literature and semi-structured interviews. Seven primary databases, two websites, and 35 articles were consulted in this project. Findings indicate that Burnout Syndrome in RNs can be analyzed in terms of four clusters of characteristics: individual, management, organizational, and work. The consequences of Burnout Syndrome are increased RN turnover rates, poor job performance, and threats to patient safety. Burnout Syndrome is more prevalent in hospitals with a higher number of patients per nurse, and among younger RNs. RN Burnout in hospitals negatively impacts the quality of care, patient safety, and the functioning of staff workers in the healthcare industry.
Paul III, D. P., Bakhamis, L., Smith, H. & Coustasse, A. (2017, September). An American Epidemic: Burnout Syndrome in Hospital Nurses. Presented at the 2017 Academy of Business Research Conference, Atlantic City, N.J.