California medical malpractice attorneys don’t doubt burnout is a vastly underestimated and neglected issue in our hospitals. It is very concerning because such levels of burnout and stress have the ability to seriously and negatively impact patient safety. A recent study conducted by Australian researchers found orthopedic surgeons were at a much higher risk of suffering burnout, compared to other doctors.
The study was conducted by researchers at the University of NSW, and found among orthopedic surgeons, burnout levels were in the staggering 50% to 60% range. Among general doctors, burnout levels were between 30% and 40%.
There is a very high-risk of surgical errors involving such orthopedic surgeons. The researchers also believe such high and widespread burnout levels among orthopedic surgeons also have an effect on the doctor’s risk for alcoholism, and other problems. These surgeons could themselves be at a much higher risk of poor health and could be at risk for developing heart disease.
Orthopedic surgeons in the study who reported they were burned out, reported feeling physically exhausted and admitted they had become much more cynical as a result of the stress and burnout. They felt much more ineffective and found their judgment skills had been affected as a result of the stress. According to the study, these doctors were much more likely to view patients non-emotionally as objects and not as human beings. The researchers also found orthopedic surgeons who suffered symptoms of burnout were more likely to admit to a desire to retire early.
Even more disturbing, it was young orthopedic surgeons who seemed to be much more likely to suffer symptoms of burnout.