Strategies to Manage Burnout Syndrome

Healthcare personnel are at high risk for moral distress and burnout. Nurse leaders need tools to recognize the development of burnout syndrome in themselves and in their staff.

Vicki Good, vice president of quality and safety at Mercy Hospital in Springfield, Missouri, and AACN past president, presented “Resiliency Tips and Strategies to Manage Moral Distress and Burnout Syndrome.”

During the session attendees learned more about the importance of developing resiliency as leaders.
“Nurse managers must look at themselves and say, ‘I have to set the example,’” Good said. “How do they use mindfulness, hope and compassion to really renew themselves as leaders and move forward?”

Good added that nurses can help prevent burnout by making sure they are building in recovery time for themselves.
Teams with high rates of burnout syndrome also have high rates of turnover, low employee engagement scores and virtually nonexistent teamwork. “We’re starting to see research showing that units with high rates of burnout syndrome also have a decrease in quality of care and a decrease in patient satisfaction. We’re now able to prove that it impacts our patients as well as ourselves,” Good said.

Good also reviewed some of the tools and resources to help nurse managers reshape their work environments.

“One size doesn’t fit all,” she said. “Without a simple toolkit available, nurse leaders will need to review best practices to find what fits best for their unit. It will be up to them to go back and try those things out.”