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Keywords:

  • burnout;
  • Maslach Burnout Inventory – General Survey;
  • nurses;
  • occupational stress

Aim

To explore the factors associated with burnout among female hospital nurses in China.

Background

Burnout has been a major concern in the field of occupational health, and yet there has been little research exploring the factors related to burnout among Chinese nurses. Exploring the factors associated with burnout is important in improving nurses’ health and the quality of health care services in China.

Methods

The study population consisted of 1845 female hospital nurses in the Liaoning Province of China. Burnout was measured using the Chinese version of the Maslach Burnout Inventory – General Survey; occupational stress was measured using the Chinese versions of the Job Content Questionnaire and Effort–Reward Imbalance Questionnaire. A general linear regression model was applied to analyse the factors associated with burnout.

Results

Mean scores (±SD) were 11.74 (7.14) for emotional exhaustion, 7.12 (5.67) for cynicism and 23.34 (9.60) for self-efficacy. Strong extrinsic effort was the most powerful predictor of emotional exhaustion and cynicism; strong psychological job demands were the most robust predictor of low self-efficacy.

Conclusion

The findings suggest that occupational stress was strongly related to burnout among female hospital nurses in China.

Implications for nursing management

Occupational stress was identified as the most robust predictor of burnout among Chinese female hospital nurses. Reducing burnout among nurses working in China may require health education, health promotion and occupational training programmes aimed at improving work situations and reducing occupational stress.