Background: Work-related stress and burnout have been found to lead to job dissatisfaction, low-organizational commitment, absenteeism, and high turnover.
Purpose: The purpose of this study was to examine the burnout experiences of occupational therapists practicing in Ontario and to describe the practice implications and coping strategies employed.
Methods: Data for this mixed methods study were collected using the Maslach Burnout Inventory-General Survey, Areas of Worklife Survey, focus groups, and interviews in the hermeneutics tradition.
Findings: High levels of emotional exhaustion were reported by 34.8% of participants, high levels of cynicism by 43.5%, and low professional efficacy by 24.6%. Practice issues included excessive demands on time, conflict, and lack of autonomy and respect. Coping strategies included spending time with family and maintaining professional/personal balance, control of work responsibilities, maintaining a sense of humor, and self-awareness/self-monitoring.
Implications: This study contributes to understanding the practice challenges for occupational therapists, factors that contribute to therapist burnout, and strategies employed to maintain competent practice.