Research Update

May 20, 2021 by

A Mindfulness-Based Intervention for ICU Nurses Can Decrease Occupational Burnout

Nurses who work in intensive care units have a high prevalence of occupational burnout.  The purpose of this study was to assess the impact of an eight-week mindfulness intervention on burnout in ICU nurses.

Nurses in two ICUs were randomized to participate in either an education program about burnout (n = 53) or a mindfulness-based intervention (n = 53). The Maslach Burnout Inventory, the Mindfulness Attention Awareness Scale, and the Acceptance and Action Questionnaire II were administered before the interventions and at one week, one month and three months after the interventions.  A total of 106 nurses began the study and 91 completed it.

Nurses’ mindfulness, experiential avoidance, and the three domains of burnout (emotional exhaustion, depersonalization, and personal accomplishment) all improved significantly more in the group randomized to the mindfulness intervention than to the education program. The effects were maintained for three months post-intervention.

The authors concluded that mindfulness-based interventions can improve the level of mindfulness and decrease the level of experiential avoidance among ICU nurses which can alleviate occupational burnout.

Xie C, et al. Complementary Therapies in Medicine, 2020-08-01, Volume 52, Article 102485.

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