BJGP Open. 2023 Oct 25:BJGPO.2023.0077. doi: 10.3399/BJGPO.2023.0077. Online ahead of print.
BACKGROUND: Burnout is common among general practitioners (GPs). Previous studies have indicated an association between high workload and burnout among doctors.
AIM: To assess the risk of burnout among single-handed GPs in Denmark in relation to self-reported and register-based workload.
DESIGN & SETTING: Questionnaire data from 312 Danish single-handed GPs and register data on their patients and provided services.
METHOD: Burnout was measured using the Maslach Burnout Inventory (MBI). A composite burnout score of quartile points was calculated. The questionnaire provided information on working hours. Register data included number of services and patient list size. Association between composite burnout score and workload was estimated with binomial regression analyses adjusting for the GPs’ age and gender, and social deprivation score of their patient lists.
RESULTS: Working more than five days a week in practice increased the risk of a high burnout score (RRadjusted =2.34, 95% CI [1.62-3.37]). Spending more than 7.5 hours a day on patient-related tasks increased the risk of a high burnout score, highest among GPs spending 8.5-9.5 hours a day on patient-related tasks (RRadjusted =2.01, 95% CI [0.90-4.51]), although not statistically significant. There was no association between number of services and risk of burnout.
CONCLUSION: Working more than five days a week in practice significantly increased the risk of burnout in Danish single-handed GPs. Spending more than 7.5 hours a day on patient-related tasks tended to increase the risk. We found no association between a high number of services and increased risk of burnout.