Researchers measure stress levels in medical professionals

Doctors often deal with workplace stress as the result of having to make difficult decisions on a daily basis, some of which have lives depending on the correct answer. Researchers at the University of Cincinnati recently conducted a survey to determine whether physicians working in different fields have similar stress levels.

Using a number of work intensity measurement tools and questionnaires, the team of scientists examined anxiety levels in 45 family healthcare providers, 20 general internal organ specialist, 22 neurologists and 21 surgeons.

The researchers discovered that general internists and surgeons experience similar levels of workplace stress. Interestingly, they also found that these types of professionals are significantly more anxious than family physicians and neurologists.

Overall, surgeons reported highest levels of task concentration, stress and physical demands when compared to the other specialists.

“A physician’s work can be assessed by the time required to complete it and by the intensity of the effort, which is central to properly valuing the services being provided,” said lead investigator Ronnie Horner, Ph.D.

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