Burnout in District Nurses – Shortage of Staff

Do you find yourself continuously weary and emotionally drained lately? Perhaps you\’ve observed substantial changes in your behaviour, such as extreme nervousness? Nurse burnout can result in mood changes and a diminished sense of personal well-being. District nurses and community psychiatric nurses are highly affected. It can affect both your personal and professional life when combined with the effects it has on other aspects of your everyday existence, such as decreased energy and impaired decision-making.

Burnout among Nurses

Work overload, fear of virus exposure, seeing dread in the eyes every day, and tragic cases of patients and colleagues – all of these aspects can add up to a lot of stress and strain.

A research paper from March 2021 called ‘Nurses\’ burnout and associated risk factors during the COVID-19 pandemic’ examined high levels of nurses’ burnout during the times of the pandemic. The overall prevalence of emotional exhaustion was 34.1%, of depersonalization was 12.6% and of lack of personal accomplishment was 15.2%. (Galanis et al., 2021). Here are some of the main factors associated with the increased levels of burnout among nurses:

-low family and colleagues readiness to cope with COVID-19 outbreak
-increased perceived threat of Covid-19, longer working time in quarantine areas
-working in a high-risk environment
-working in hospitals with inadequate and insufficient material and human resources -increased workload and lower level of specialized training regarding COVID-19 (Galanis et al., 2021).

The pandemic, of course, is not the only stress factor for the nurses. In fact, increased stress levels among nurses have been reported way before the Covid-19 pandemic. Nurse burnout is thought to be caused by a shortage of employees, which leads to job stress. Nursing shortages are a big issue in the United Kingdom. During pandemics, hospitals devote a great deal of effort to saving the lives of patients using all available human resources. As a result, the workforce is overworked. To make up for the shortage of nursing staff, nurses are working longer and longer shifts. Nursing personnel are exhausted from working even on holidays, doing night shifts, and not getting enough sleep.

Stress levels among community nurses

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Community nurses make a big difference in the lives of those they visit at home and in residential care facilities on a daily basis. They provide increasingly complex patient care as well as family support.
The different types of community nurses, like all healthcare professionals, have been subjected to extraordinary strains in the last year. COVID-19 has reduced staffing numbers, raised demand for healthcare services, and significantly altered how care is delivered in the community. Again, the pressure has been there long before the times of Covid-19. Another factors for job dissatisfaction and work-related stress are:


– Shortage of staff

Same as with the rest of the nurses, insufficient number of staff is the main reason for burnout among community nurses. The Royal College of Nursing has stated that the number of nurses working in community nursing have continuously gone lower since 2010. The report is showing that there has been a 12% drop in the number of community health nurses (RCN, 2020). Queen’s Nursing Institute (QNI) has published a review stating that one of the factors for community nurses shortage is the ageing workforce. 


– Lack of administration and technological improvement

One of the major issues among community nurses is the lack of technological implementations. This sometimes means that instead of spending 15 minutes on a simple administrative task, they need to dedicate more precious time because the system is not automated.
Many community nurses in Wales in 2019 have still been utilising ‘paper-based systems,\’ according to the BBC. This arises from a complete absence of technology support to carry out their duties. One of the key issues making their work more difficult to sustain is IT systems, connection, and support infrastructure (QNI, 2019). 

How to Reduce the Stress Levels among community nurses

Stress is an unavoidable aspect of a nurse\’s life, but they must distinguish between healthy and motivating stress and destructive stress. Nursing burnout can be mitigated in a few ways, according to evidence-based practice.

– Find a work-life balance that works for you.

Setting boundaries between work and personal life is critical for all nurses. Once you\’ve left the hospital, try to divert your attention away from work-related issues and concerns. You\’re not only a nurse, but you\’re also a regular person.

– Get enough rest.

Nurses work long hours and occasionally work night shifts, so setting up a suitable sleeping pattern can be difficult. However, there are several things that can assist, including synchronising the circadian clock, exercising at specific times, and planning a healthy diet.

Are you able to recognize the signs of nurse burnout? It\’s critical to know when you\’ve reached the limit of your stress tolerance. Maintaining a healthy lifestyle may be advantageous. It is also possible to contact a specialist, and there is nothing wrong with it!

Here is the mental health helpline for nurses: 0300 131 7000 

We recognise how tough this year has been for all of you nurses. We want you to be in good physical and emotional health. Please don\’t dismiss warning indications that you\’re overworked and stressed. A probable burnout impact can be avoided by taking care of yourself and recognising and removing stress sources.

 

Mylocum provides plenty of opportunities for community nurses which you can find on our website.
Are you looking for nursing agencies near your location? Mylocum and CarePro are based in London but we provide vacancies all around the UK.

You can check the available opportunities on our website or you can directly contact a member of our compliance team. Find Mylocum on CV-Library.

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