HumanInsight Burnout Assessment Among Surgeons and Surgical Trainees During the COVID-19 Pandemic: A Systematic Review
J Surg Educ. 2022 May 11:S1931-7204(22)00103-9. doi: 10.1016/j.jsurg.2022.04.015. Online ahead of print.
BACKGROUND: The objective of the current study was to summarize current research on burnout among surgical trainees and surgeons during the COVID-19 pandemic.
METHODS: PubMed, SCOPUS, Embase, and Psych INFO were systematically searched for studies that evaluated burnout during the COVID-19 pandemic among surgical trainees and surgeons.
RESULTS: A total of 29 articles met inclusion criteria, most of which originated from the United States (n = 18, 62.1%). Rates of burnout ranged from 6.0% to 86.0%. Personal factors responsible for burnout were fear of contracting/transmitting COVID-19 (8 studies, 27.6%), female gender (8, 27.6%), and younger age (5, 17.2%). Professional factors contributing to burnout included increased COVID-19 patient clinical load (6, 20.7%), limited work experience (6, 20.7%), reduction in operative cases (5, 17.2%) and redeployment to COVID-19 wards (4, 13.8%). The COVID-19 pandemic negatively impacted surgical education due to reduced number of operative cases (11, 37.9%), decreased hands-on experience (4, 13.8%), and not being able to complete case requirements (3, 10.34%). The shift of didactics to virtual formats (3, 10.3%), increased use of telemedicine (2, 6.9%), and improved camaraderie among residents (1, 3.4%) were viewed as positive consequences.
CONCLUSION: COVID-19 related burnout was reported in as many as 1 in 2 surgical trainees and attending surgeons. Intrinsic- (i.e., gender, age), family- (i.e., family/being married/having children or being single/not having children), as well as work-related extrinsic- (i.e., work-force deployment, risk of infection/spread, changes in educational format) factors were strongly associated with risk of burnout. These factors should be considered when designing interventions to ameliorate burnout among surgical trainees and surgeons.
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