General practitioners (GPs) play a central role in patient care and are exposed to high levels of work strain and consequent burnout due to the large number of stressful patient-doctor relationships. Despite the high likelihood of burnout among GPs, limited information is available about this topic. Aims: To explore the prevalence of burnout among GPs and residents in Hungary. Methods: Exploratory/descriptive, cross-sectional study with self-administered questionnaires among 453 GPs and 43 residents. To assess burnout, the Maslach Burnout Inventory (MBI-GS) was used. To evaluate the level of burnout, mean (± SD) scores on the emotional exhaustion, cynicism/depersonalization, and personal accomplishment dimensions of the MBI were determined among male and female GPs and residents. Differences in the level or degree of burnout (high, intermediate and low) in all three burnout dimensions between male and female GPs and residents were examined by independent samples t -test and χ 2 -tests. Socio-demographic antecedents to burnout were assessed by linear regression analyses. Results: Residents reported significantly lower cynicism/depersonalization [ t (df): 2.8 (476); p < 0.01] and personal accomplishment [ t (df): 2.0 (485); p < 0.05] compared to GPs. No gender differences were identified in the level of burnout. Significantly more GPs then residents reported high [χ 2 (df) = 5.9 (1); p < 0.05] or intermediate [χ 2 (df) = 4.6 (1); p < 0.05] degree of depersonalization. Emotional exhaustion, depersonalization, and low personal accomplishment were reported by around 30%, 60%, and 100% of the physicians, respectively. Being a resident emerged as the strongest negative predictor of depersonalization (β = -0.09, 95% CI -0.22 - -0.002). Conclusions: The prevalence of burnout is high among GPs, and almost all GPs report low degree of personal accomplishment. Residency emerged as a significant protective correlate of depersonalization. These findings provide further data for cross-cultural burnout research.
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