Nurse Retention or Nurse Burnout

Introduction

Although the healthcare system constantly undergoes tremendous transformations, many nurses across the globe still suffer from burnouts. Those, who are most likely to experience this issue, are usually very passionate about their role in the patients' treatment process without caring about their own health. Since nurse burnout is a significant issue in most health institutions, it requires a solution based on evidence. In fact, the approach plays a key role in helping nurses to deal with the discussed issue as well as recover and resume their duties with due diligence (Lachman, 2016).

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As much as healthcare systems evolve and nurses have to deal with a heavy workload on a daily basis, health care management ought to implement evidence-based practice solutions to deal with nurse burnouts. Therefore, the following paper provides an assessment and critical evaluation of the evidence-based literature so as to suggest the solution to the issue under consideration by presenting nurse burnout with the PICOT question and incorporating the findings to propose practice changes.

PICOT

PICOT - Considering the nurses suffering from burn-out (P), does an intervention that relies on evidence-based practice (I) assist health care facilities, which adopt the program when compared to those that do not, (C) in reducing nurses’ stress levels (O) within a six month period?

Evidence-based Practice (EBP)

Evidence-based practice (EBP) is a useful approach in finding an amicable solution to the matter of nurse burnout as it applies to nurses in different specialties. This program will involve clinical expertise in implementing research findings in relation to the discussed issue. However, the solution has to be based on nursing practice for it to be valid. In addition, the proposed practice ought to be ethical in the sense that it integrates nurses’ needs with clinical expertise. Nurse burnout is an especially common phenomenon in health care institutions where the nurses handle psychiatric patients, patients in intensive care, and those with special needs such as palliative care.

Nursing education trains future specialists to abide by the nursing code of conduct that frequently has a rather negative effect on nurses since the compassionate nature of most workers leads them to overtax themselves while working for long hours. Furthermore, nurses often handle the patients that may require more attention than the former are obliged to provide, which implies working for long hours and enduring all the challenges that come with treating such patients. These cases further lead to exhaustion, high-stress levels, and demotivation in nurses - a phenomenon best known as nurse burnout. Therefore, it is very important to find solutions that integrate EBP (Lachman, 2016).

EBP Solution to Nurse Burnout

According to Ahanchian, Meshkinyazd, and Soudmand (2015), nurses, who work with psychiatric patients, experience frequent cases of burnout characterized by exhaustion and high-stress levels. The authors warn that the conditions of such workers can deteriorate and affect them socially, physically, psychologically, and interpersonally. It is important to understand the circumstances under which nurses developed burnout before a proper solution can be implemented. Accordingly, it is essential to realize how psychiatric nurses undergo burnout in order to use their experiences to find a possible solution to the syndrome.

The work overload and stubborn psychiatric patients make a significant contribution to nurse burnouts. Unlike general nurses who handle ordinary patients, those working in mental health institutions treat patients whose behavior and conditions may affect the nurses’ minds to a great extent. For that reason, intervention measures ought to be personalized so that every nurse gets a remedy that improves their social, physical, and psychological state.

In the research conducted by Newman, Maggott, and Alexander (2015), group drumming proved to be one of the most effective ways of preventing burnout among the nurses working in mental health care institutions. The method proves its effectiveness in relation to the staff members who handle adolescents and children is such facilities. The authors base their reasoning on the research conducted in South Africa that established the rampant burnout and work-related stress in public health care institutions. Since evidence-based practice incorporates patients’ expectations and feelings, the study surveyed various staff members within mental health institutions to obtain their experiences.

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Besides, the findings are derived from the previous practice initiated by the researchers and clinicians working with nurse burnout and its reduction. The research established that staff members who took part in group drumming activities reduced their burnouts significantly. For that reason, nurses should participate in drumming groups to ease the tension and rejuvenate so that they can improve their morale at work.

Ross (2013) claims that a Crisis Assessment and Treatment Team (CATT) Service can help the nurses working in community mental health institutions to overcome their burnouts. In this regard, it is important to assess the level of the crisis with consideration of the existing literature on the solutions to the matter. Since the author bases his recommendations on the existing studies, the suggestions can help to decrease burnout levels among the nurses dealing with mental health patients.

However, Ndawula (2012) calls for the interrogation of nurse burnouts before a proper implementation plan can be initiated. In his suggestions, the author relies on other literature on this topic, although he approaches the issues from a different perspective. According to Ndawula (2012), the evidence-based practice requires an evaluation of the causes through research and prevention or coping measures that go in tandem with clinical procedures. In essence, clinical expertise is important in addressing nurse burnout.

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Owing to the growing demand for the services provided by nurses in various specialties, the latter tend to develop burnouts that affect their heaths and performance. Based on practice, the article recommends nursing institutions and their employees to adopt educational initiatives on stress management. However, this recommendation does not extend to social demographic and psychographic levels that lack EBP.

Vorell and Carmack (2015) insist that the nurses working in stressful conditions require as much healing as they administer to their patients. The proposal is based on the clinical practice in the sense that it relates to the prevention and solving of nurse burnout to temporary medical workers. Despite their immense contribution to the nursing profession, the latter fight with high-stress level characteristics of burnout. The recommendations by the study were evidence-based because they involved American temporary medical workers in suggesting the most suitable solution to the problem.

This aspect of the research validates the solution in terms of merging the research finding with clinical expertise. Experiences of the temporary medical workers in the course of their medical roles indicated high-stress factors, but the coping strategies were effective in their reduction. Although the study was confined to the temporary medical worker, in particular, the coping strategies can be also applied in a number of related nursing specialties.

When addressing the issue of nurse burnout, Subramanian and Kumar (2012) established that nurses attending to general, HIV/AIDS, and cancer patients were predisposed to burnouts that required coping strategies. In essence, the conditions of most HIV/AIDS and cancer patients may be deplorable or unpredictable, depending on their individual circumstances. Nurses handling such patients address various aspects that further affect them both socially and psychologically. The coping strategies may vary depending on the level of burnout, the nature of the specialty, and the existing clinical procedures. The above research provided the ground for the recommendations based on evidence in practice.

The critical conditions of HIV and cancer patients demand the nurses to go beyond the required limits in caring for the patients, which affects the nurses psychologically. What is more, health care administrators often develop burnout symptoms occasioned by protracted exposure to occupational stress. Owing to the high levels of burnout syndrome among nurses, particular personal accomplishment, and emotional exhaustion, medical workers may resort to such coping strategies as blaming others, putting the problem into perspective, and despairing. However, the most suitable approaches that the nurses handling HIV and cancer patients should apply when addressing the issue under consideration include dissecting the burnout problem and dealing with it in its specific context.

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Summary

Due to the increased number of nurse burnout cases in various health care facilities, a critical assessment of evidence-based literature that supports the solution to the matter is necessary. By presenting nurse burnout problem with the PICOT question, implementers can gauge their level of success in reducing, preventing, and coping with the discussed problem. Additionally, the presentation of the proposed practice changes needs to be a compilation of the evidence-based findings.

In essence, nurse burnout is a common condition among nurses across the globe, which requires appropriate interventions to order to prevent and cope with the problem. Although studies show that some nurses can manage the cases of burnouts quite successfully, the intervention measures ought to incorporate evidence-based practice. The most common symptoms of this problem include exhaustion, high levels of stress, reduced performance, and the lack of empathy towards patients.

It is important to assess the cause of burnout before initiating any intervention because the causes are diverse. In this regard, the individualized approach works the most effectively. Consequently, the coping strategies include dealing with the syndrome directly in addition to initiating the programs that may prevent future burnouts.

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