• Review
  • Published October 2016

The relationship between professional burnout and quality and safety in healthcare: a meta-analysis.

Burnout among health care providers is highly prevalent and is a pressing patient safety concern. This meta-analysis examined the relationship of burnout to health care quality. Investigators identified 82 studies of burnout and quality or safety. Most studies were cross-sectional and measured safety and quality by self-report. In the pooled analysis, higher levels of burnout were associated with lower reported quality and safety. These relationships were present across a range of outcomes and study types. Although the effects were modest in magnitude, their consistency demonstrates the importance of addressing burnout in order to improve many aspects of patient safety. A past PSNet interview with J. Bryan Sexton discussed the relationship between burnout and patient safety.

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