Effect of job satisfaction on burnout among physicians: A survey study in urban public medical institutions in Hubei province, China


Objectives: Chinese physicians are being loaded with the enormous psychological pressure and so tend to be susceptible to burnout. Little is known on the relationship between job satisfaction and burnout for physicians from urban public medical institutions. We aim to describe the degree of burnout and evaluate the impact of job satisfaction on burnout. Methods: A cross-sectional survey was conducted in March 2010 in Hubei province, central China. The job satisfaction and burnout instruments were obtained by modifying the Chinese Physicians’ Job Satisfaction Questionnaire and the Chinese Maslach Burnout Inventory, respectively. Such statistical methods as one-way ANOVA, Pearson correlation coefficient and GLM-univariate were employed. Results: The observed mean and burnout incidence on emotional exhaustion (3.45 ± 0.75, 66.99%) and depersonalization (3.56 ± 0.76, 68.64%) were high, but reduced personal accomplishment (2.18 ± 0.56, 5.79%) was low. The distribution of the degree of overall burnout was: 3.2% (severe), 48.2% (moderate), 35.4% (mild) and 13.2% (zero). Less the development level of urban area and higher the grade of medical institution was, more severe physicians’ burnout was. Job-itself satisfaction (b1 = -0.166, b2 = -0.056), job rewards satisfaction (b1 = -0.084, b2 = -0.150) and medical practicing environment satisfaction (b1 = -0.096, b2 = -0.319) were identified as significant negative predictors of emotional exhaustion (R2 = 0.35) and also of depersonalization (R2 = 0.46). Only the job-itself satisfaction (b3 = -0.355) contributed to reduced personal accomplishment (R2 = 0.40). significantly Conclusions: Occupational burnout, especially emotional exhaustion and depersonalization, is common and serious among Chinese physicians. Several, but not all dimensions of job satisfaction, which prove to have predictive effects on burnout, should be paid more attention to in order to improve physicians’ psychological health.

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Zhang, Y. , Shen, L. , Lou, J. , Jing, Y. , Lu, Y. , Liang, H. and Feng, X. (2012) Effect of job satisfaction on burnout among physicians: A survey study in urban public medical institutions in Hubei province, China. Health, 4, 856-865. doi: 10.4236/health.2012.410131.

Conflicts of Interest

The authors declare no conflicts of interest.


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