Objective: To evaluate the prevalence of burnout and satisfaction with work-life balance in physicians and US workers in 2014 relative to 2011.
Patients and methods: From August 28, 2014, to October 6, 2014, we surveyed both US physicians and a probability-based sample of the general US population using the methods and measures used in our 2011 study. Burnout was measured using validated metrics, and satisfaction with work-life balance was assessed using standard tools.
Results: Of the 35,922 physicians who received an invitation to participate, 6880 (19.2%) completed surveys. When assessed using the Maslach Burnout Inventory, 54.4% (n=3680) of the physicians reported at least 1 symptom of burnout in 2014 compared with 45.5% (n=3310) in 2011 (P<.001). Satisfaction with work-life balance also declined in physicians between 2011 and 2014 (48.5% vs 40.9%; P<.001). Substantial differences in rates of burnout and satisfaction with work-life balance were observed by specialty. In contrast to the trends in physicians, minimal changes in burnout or satisfaction with work-life balance were observed between 2011 and 2014 in probability-based samples of working US adults, resulting in an increasing disparity in burnout and satisfaction with work-life balance in physicians relative to the general US working population. After pooled multivariate analysis adjusting for age, sex, relationship status, and hours worked per week, physicians remained at an increased risk of burnout (odds ratio, 1.97; 95% CI, 1.80-2.16; P<.001) and were less likely to be satisfied with work-life balance (odds ratio, 0.68; 95% CI, 0.62-0.75; P<.001).
Conclusion: Burnout and satisfaction with work-life balance in US physicians worsened from 2011 to 2014. More than half of US physicians are now experiencing professional burnout.
Copyright © 2015 Mayo Foundation for Medical Education and Research. Published by Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.