Emotional exhaustion of nursing staff: influence of emotional annoyance and resilience

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This paper aimed to study the influence of emotional annoyance and resilience on the emotional exhaustion levels of nursing staff.


Emotional exhaustion is one of the key factors in understanding both the performance and the quality of care that nurses give to their patients. There is a considerable body of knowledge that has focused on the study of emotional exhaustion in relation to cynicism and professional efficiency. More recently emotional annoyance and resilience have been identified as variables that could help explain levels of emotional exhaustion.


Nine hundred eighty-three nurses who work in five hospitals in the north of Spain were invited to participate in the study. Five hundred questionnaires were distributed, of which 200 were fully completed. The average response rate was 40%. A personal information form, and a questionnaire concerning nurses' emotional annoyance, resilience, professional efficiency and cynicism were used as data collection instruments. To estimate a path model with latent variables, partial least squares was used.


Emotional annoyance and resilience contribute to a better understanding of emotional exhaustion levels of nursing staff. There was a significant association between emotional annoyance and emotional exhaustion (β = 0.26, P = 0.020), while resilience appeared to be protective against emotional exhaustion (β = −0.22, P = 0.004).


A more complete explanation and understanding of emotional exhaustion in nursing is achieved when emotional annoyance and resilience is measured in addition elements of burnout, which include professional efficiency and cynicism.

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