Purpose The aims of this study were to determine the self-reported prevalence of burnout in chairs of academic radiation oncology departments, to identify factors contributing to burnout, and to compare the prevalence of burnout with that seen in other academic chair groups. Methods and Materials An anonymous online survey was administered to the membership of the Society of Chairs of Academic Radiation Oncology Programs (SCAROP). Burnout was measured with the Maslach Burnout Inventory-Human Services Survey (MBI-HSS). Results Questionnaires were returned from 66 of 87 chairs (76% response rate). Seventy-nine percent of respondents reported satisfaction with their current positions. Common major stressors were budget deficits and human resource issues. One-quarter of chairs reported that it was at least moderately likely that they would step down in the next 1 to 2 years; these individuals demonstrated significantly higher emotional exhaustion. Twenty-five percent of respondents met the MBI-HSS criteria for low burnout, 75% for moderate burnout, and none for high burnout. Group MBI-HSS subscale scores demonstrated a pattern of moderate emotional exhaustion, low depersonalization, and moderate personal accomplishment, comparing favorably with other specialties. Conclusions This is the first study of burnout in radiation oncology chairs with a high response rate and using a validated psychometric tool. Radiation oncology chairs share similar major stressors to other chair groups, but they demonstrate relatively high job satisfaction and lower burnout. Emotional exhaustion may contribute to the anticipated turnover in coming years. Further efforts addressing individual and institutional factors associated with burnout may improve the relationship with work of chairs and other department members.
|Number of pages
|International Journal of Radiation Oncology Biology Physics
|Published - Feb 1 2014
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Radiology Nuclear Medicine and imaging
- Cancer Research