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Burnout among healthcare providers during COVID-19: Challenges and evidence-based interventions

Abida Sultana , Rachit Sharma , Md Mahbub Hossain , Sudip Bhattacharya , Neetu Purohit

DOI: 10.20529/IJME.2020.73


Abstract

Burnout is a major occupational problem among healthcare providers, especially during the Covid-19 pandemic. The frontline health workforce is experiencing a high workload and multiple psychosocial stressors which may affect their mental and emotional health, leading to burnout symptoms. Moreover, sleep deprivation and a critical lack of psychosocial support may aggravate such symptoms amidst Covid-19. From an ethical viewpoint, healthcare providers may experience moral distress while safeguarding patient welfare and autonomy. Moreover, social injustice and structural inequities may affect their emotional health while tackling a high volume of new cases and mortality. Global evidence indicates the need for adopting multipronged evidence-based approaches to address burnout during this pandemic, which may include increasing the awareness of work-related stress and burnout, promoting mindfulness and self-care practices for promoting mental wellbeing, ensuring optimal mental health services, using digital technologies to address workplace stress and deliver mental health interventions, and improving organisational policies and practices focusing on burnout among healthcare providers.

Keywords: Burnout, occupational stress, coronavirus disease, Covid-19, health workforce, occupational health, health policy

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