Category: Professional Posters
Purpose: The impact of stress and burnout among pharmacy students is an issue that has received little attention in the published literature. However, traction is gaining on the importance of research in this area. Identifying predictors of stress among pharmacy students can help administrators develop programs to alleviate this issue. The objective of this research project was to evaluate the prevalence of burnout among pharmacy students in two colleges of pharmacy and to identify predictor variables of burnout based on demographic variables collected.
Methods: The project measured burnout scores in pharmacy students at a single point in time from all classes (PS1-PS4) at two local colleges of pharmacy using the Maslach Burnout Inventory – General Survey for Students (MBI-GS-S). The MBI-GS-S is a validated 16-item instrument considered to be the gold standard tool for evaluating burnout. This instrument assesses three major aspects of burnout: emotional exhaustion, cynicism, and professional efficacy. Demographic information collected via a supplemental survey, included: age, perceived stress, organizational involvement, outside employment, perceived support, career goal, and overall health (i.e., sleep patterns, exercise patterns). Statistical analysis was performed to determine differences across campuses and to assess the relationship between demographic variables and the burnout scores using ANOVA and univariate linear regression, respectively.
Results: There was no significant difference between colleges for the outcomes of emotional exhaustion (EE) or cynicism (C). Although one college had a slightly higher mean on the professional efficacy (PE) domain score (24.81 vs. 23.50 vs. 22.97, p=0.0352, 0.041), the magnitude was small. For both colleges, female gender was associated with higher scores in the EE domain (B=3.61, p<0.0001). Leadership positions (EE: B=0.768, p=0.0029; C: B=0.676, p=0.0178), getting less sleep per night (EE: B= -1.34, p<0.0001, C: B= -0.529, p=0.0301), and worrying about finances (EE: B= -1.62, p<0.0001, C: B= -1.306, p<0.0001) was associated with higher scores in both the EE and C domains, respectively. Having less emotional support (EE: B=1.92, p<0.0001, PE: B= -1.50, p<0.0001, and C: B=2.26, p<0.0001 for PE) and worrying about academics (EE: B= -3.15, p<0.0001, PE: B=1.20, p<0.0001 for PE, and C: B= -2.30, p<0.0001) was associated with higher scores in all 3 domains. Participation in mindfulness/meditation (B=1.55, p=0.0006) or prayer/spiritual activities (B=1.21, p=0.0297) was associated with higher PE scores. Scores for EE, PE, and C were better in the P1 and P4 year, but worse in the P2 and P3 year (p<0.05 for all assessment points).
Conclusion: This data can be shared with students, faculty, advisors, and support staff to help educate on self-care or institutional strategies to alleviate or prevent burnout. Future research should focus on interventional approaches to reduce modifiable risk factors.