Small changes may help health care workers combat burnout

Some hospitals are making small changes to combat clinician burnout fueled by feelings of being overworked during the COVID-19 pandemic. In Florida, changing a state rule about where patients may receive infusions freed up space and shortened wait times in emergency departments. A plexiglass wall with rubber sleeves at the bedside alleviated a glove shortage at a Massachusetts facility. Giving patients iPads so staff could communicate with them without donning personal protective equipment was another innovation proposed by front-line staff and approved by management. One common complaint: workers have to search for a functioning photocopier, said Christina Maslach, the University of California, Berkeley, psychologist who developed the Maslach Burnout Index. In response to people looking for a way to address burnout, she said, “There is no one solution. There are many.” (NPR article, 9/15/21)