AdvisorBadger, Terry A.
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PublisherThe University of Arizona.
RightsCopyright © is held by the author. Digital access to this material is made possible by the University Libraries, University of Arizona. Further transmission, reproduction or presentation (such as public display or performance) of protected items is prohibited except with permission of the author.
AbstractBackground: Compassion Fatigue (CF) describes the emotional, spiritual, intellectual and physical exhaustion that results from untreated distress among nurses, stemming from exposure to traumatic events and work environment stressors. Comprised of Burnout (BO), Secondary Traumatic Stress (STS) and Compassion Satisfaction (CS), CF results when BO and STS outweigh CS. CF leads to physical and emotional problems including fatigue, hopelessness, anger, and an increased use of sick days. For hospitals, this means poor morale, increased medication errors and higher turnover. Objective: The purpose of this study was to determine the prevalence and severity of CF risk among the nursing staff at Maricopa Medical Center (MMC).Design: Descriptive study completed to determine: 1) What is the prevalence and severity of CF risk among nurses at MMC; and 2) compared to nurses with low CF risk, do nurses with high CF risk have differences in demographic and workplace characteristics? Setting: Maricopa Medical Center between April 14, 2015 and May 26, 2015 Participants: 315 full-time nurses at MMC in Phoenix. Measurements: Nurses were surveyed using the Professional Quality of Life Scale-5 (ProQOL-5) measuring the three components of CF: BO, STS and CS. Results: 46% of nurses reported moderate to high risk of CF. Nurses who worked in Labor and Delivery, Psychiatric Annex/Desert Vista, Emergency Departments, Intensive Care Units and Rapid Response units reported the highest risk. Risk increased significantly after their first year working at MMC. More frequent job changes outside of MMC correlated with lower risk profiles. Lower risk was seen in nurses with advanced degrees. Trends indicated that younger nurses, Clinical Resource Leaders, and nurses who had taken nine or more sick days in the previous six months were more at risk. Conclusion: Almost half of nurses were at moderate to high risk of CF. Unique findings were reported, including possible links between CF risk and job changes, and years working at a single facility. These links were previously unstudied. It was determined that the focus of interventions should be on nurses who work in the units most at risk and on new hire nurses, regardless of their years of nursing experience.
Degree ProgramGraduate College