Rivas et al. (2021) study work-related stress on nursing staff in “Analysis of Burnout Syndrome and Resilience in Nurses throughout the COVID-19 Pandemic: A Cross-Sectional Study.” The authors are affiliated to Hospital Clínico Universitario Valladolid, Nursing Faculty, University of Valladolid, and CEIP Antonio Machado located in Spain. All of the authors have published a significant number of peer-reviewed articles contributing to healthcare. The article’s authors have played an important part in many studies that undoubtedly enhance their credentials. For instance, Maria Lopez, one of the article’s authors, has also participated in research that focused on non-smokers’ and smokers’ support for smoke-free legislation throughout 12 European countries.
The purpose of the study is to understand how the COVID-19 pandemic has caused nursing staff to experience work-related stress. The event increased the demand for nurses to provide optimal healthcare, raising the need for healthcare organizations to maintain an enduring workforce (Rivas et al., 2021). The nursing workforce must always encounter workload challenges, rapid organizational transformations, reduced autonomy, and temporary staff recruitment (Rivas et al., 2021).
These challenges have tripled during the pandemic due to the increasing cases of coronavirus infections. In this context, healthcare systems must focus on the pandemic’s impact on nursing staff and their mental health. The rapid emergence of the pandemic has resulted in disruption of the work balance in healthcare settings. This study seeks to understand the impact of health personnel to formulate future strategic actions to reduce burnout and enhance resilience. In this regard, the purpose of the article is to evaluate burnout syndrome and nurses’ resilience during the pandemic so that future actions are adequately formulated to improve the working atmosphere in healthcare settings for dealing with stress.
Although the research article has not specified any research questions, a careful analysis would reveal that it seeks to answer specific issues. Through the study, the researchers attempt to understand how the work pressures experienced by nurses in an overloaded and under-resourced healthcare system could adversely impact their mental state. In addition, they also want to establish the significance of the health of healthcare professionals. Furthermore, the study evaluates burnout syndrome and the resilience of nurses during the pandemic. In this regard, one could identify two different research questions that could be specified as follows:
1. How can the work pressure that nurses experience in a healthcare system with a high workload and low resources affect their mental health?
2. What is the importance of physical and mental health of healthcare professionals?
Review of literature is a highly significant portion of research articles as it helps the reader understand previous studies’ findings. Usually, research articles have a separate section under the title “Literature Review” for this purpose. However, this study does not contain such a section. Its introduction presents significant findings of previous studies that show that healthcare professionals’ psychological difficulties in the healthcare setting could lead to permanent problems. In addition, the researchers also summarise findings of other studies in the Discussion to support the results they have obtained.
The study population included 1022 active nurses who worked in hospitalization units and specialization services in the Regional Health Service in Spain. The researchers excluded nurses who were on sick leave during the study. The sample consisted of 101 nurses who were provided with the Maslach Burnout Inventory and the Scale of Resilience of Connor-Davidson (Rivas et al., 2021). The nurses answered the question using the hospital’s intranet system (Rivas et al., 2021). Only after agreeing to participate and reading the purpose of the study were the participants provided with the questionnaire. The researchers also took into account sociodemographic variables such as age, working unit, gender, and employment contract (Rivas et al., 2021). These processes ensure that the participants’ agreement to participate in the study is voluntary and their information is kept anonymous and confidential.
Rivas et al. (2021) conducted a descriptive cross-sectional study to assess burnout syndrome and the resilience of registered nurses. This method is highly useful in describing the status of relationships among phenomena at a certain point (Ihudiebube-Splendor & Chikeme, 2020). In this context, using this approach would help the researchers to describe how the pandemic has caused a change in nurses’ profession. It also facilitates assessing the exposure and outcomes of the event (Ihudiebube-Splendor & Chikeme, 2020). As discussed above, the researchers used the tool Maslach Burnout Inventory questionnaire for assessing burnout syndrome and the Scale of Resilience of Connor-Davidson for resilience (Rivas et al., 2021). The internal validity is measured using Cronbach’s alpha, and a Chi-square test was used to establish the association between sociodemographic variables and the survey results (Rivas et al., 2021).
The study results showed significant burnout in the participants. Furthermore, the researchers found that nurses with high levels of stress were permanent and interim nurses rather than temporary nurses (Rivas et al., 2021). In addition, nurses who looked after coronavirus patients showed higher levels of burnout than those who took care of other pathologies (Rivas et al., 2021). The study results also discovered a strong connection between emotional fatigue and resilience, as nurses who had high scores in resilience bravely faced emotional burnout and cynicism (Rivas et al., 2021). However, the lack of randomness of the sample is an essential limitation of the study. It would be worthwhile to focus on other areas of healthcare in the future. Nonetheless, Rivas et al. (2021) reveal the impact of stressful situations of nurses during the pandemic. The study contributes to forming a highly efficient management system that involves planning strategies for reducing burnout and improving nurses’ resilience in unpredictable situations.