The Relationship between Burnout and Help-Seeking Behaviors, Concerns, and Attitudes of Residents

Liselotte (Lotte) Dyrbye, Andrea Leep Hunderfund, Richard C. Winters, Susan M. Moeschler, Brianna E. Vaa Stelling, Eric J. Dozois, Daniel V. Satele, Colin Patrick West

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

Purpose To evaluate the relationship between help-seeking concerns and attitudes and burnout among residents. Method In 2019, all residents across the 4 Mayo Clinic sites were surveyed. The survey included 2 items from the Maslach Burnout Inventory, an item from the National Comorbidity Survey Replication about likelihood of seeking professional help for a serious emotional problem, and items developed to explore residents' help-seeking behaviors and concerns. Multivariable logistic regression was conducted for each outcome variable and included age, gender, specialty, postgraduate year, site, and burnout. Results Of the 1,146 residents to whom surveys were sent, 762 (66.5%) responded. Nearly half (342/747, 45.8%) were concerned about negative consequence to their career if they went on medical leave, and one-third (247/753, 32.8%) were reluctant to seek professional help for a serious emotional concern. Of the 437 residents who had never attended a personal health appointment during scheduled work, 34.6% (151) thought it would be difficult to tell a supervising physician they needed to miss work due to a scheduled appointment. On multivariable analysis, burnout was independently associated with reporting it would be difficult to tell a supervising physician of a need to attend an appointment (odds ratio [OR] 2.32; 95% confidence interval [CI] 1.46, 3.67; P <.001), being concerned about negative consequence to their career if they went on medical leave (OR 2.09; 95% CI 1.49, 2.93; P <.001), and reluctance to seek professional care for a serious emotional problem (OR 1.65; 95% CI 1.17, 2.34; P =.004). Conclusions Barriers to self-care and help-seeking are common among residents and may be worse among those with burnout. Strategies to reduce stigma and promote a culture of well-being are needed.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)701-708
Number of pages8
JournalAcademic Medicine
DOIs
StateAccepted/In press - 2021

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Education

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