Next Article in Journal
The Experiences of First-Time Fathers in Perinatal Services: Present but Invisible
Next Article in Special Issue
Does Employee Care Trigger Innovation Under a Healthy and Safe Working Environment? Evidence from the Pharmaceutical Industry in China
Previous Article in Journal
Challenges and Obstacles Faced by Trainee Female Physicians: An Integrative Research on Gender Discrimination, Stress, Depression and Harassment
Previous Article in Special Issue
The Influence of Social Support on the Relationship between Emotional Demands and Health of Hospital Nurses: A Cross-Sectional Study
Article

Understanding the Links between Inferring Mental States, Empathy, and Burnout in Medical Contexts

1
Departamento de Psicología Cognitiva, Social y Organizacional, Universidad de La Laguna, 38205 La Laguna, Spain
2
Departamento de Psicología Clínica, Psicobiología y Metodología, Universidad de La Laguna, 38205 La Laguna, Spain
3
Instituto de Neurociencia Cognitiva (IUNE), Universidad de La Laguna, 38205 La Laguna, Spain
4
Experimental Psychology, University College London, London WC1H 0AP, UK
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Academic Editor: Shailesh Kumar
Healthcare 2021, 9(2), 158; https://doi.org/10.3390/healthcare9020158
Received: 4 January 2021 / Revised: 25 January 2021 / Accepted: 26 January 2021 / Published: 3 February 2021
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Burnout, Perceived Efficacy, Compassion Fatigue and Job Satisfaction)
It is generally accepted that empathy should be the basis of patient care. However, this ideal may be unrealistic if healthcare professionals suffer adverse effects when engaging in empathy. The aim of this study is to explore the effect of inferring mental states and different components of empathy (perspective-taking; empathic concern; personal distress) in burnout dimensions (emotional exhaustion; depersonalization; personal accomplishment). A total of 184 healthcare professionals participated in the study (23% male, Mage = 44.60; SD = 10.46). We measured participants’ empathy, the inference of mental states of patients, and burnout. Correlation analyses showed that inferring mental states was positively associated with perspective-taking and with empathic concern, but uncorrelated with personal distress. Furthermore, emotional exhaustion was related to greater levels of personal distress and greater levels of inferences of mental states. Depersonalization was associated with greater levels of personal distress and lower levels of empathic concern. Personal accomplishment was associated with the inference of mental states in patients, lower levels of personal distress, and perspective-taking. These results provide a better understanding of how different components of empathy and mental state inferences may preserve or promote healthcare professionals’ burnout. View Full-Text
Keywords: empathy; mental states inferences; burnout; healthcare professionals empathy; mental states inferences; burnout; healthcare professionals
Show Figures

Figure 1

MDPI and ACS Style

Delgado, N.; Bonache, H.; Betancort, M.; Morera, Y.; Harris, L.T. Understanding the Links between Inferring Mental States, Empathy, and Burnout in Medical Contexts. Healthcare 2021, 9, 158. https://doi.org/10.3390/healthcare9020158

AMA Style

Delgado N, Bonache H, Betancort M, Morera Y, Harris LT. Understanding the Links between Inferring Mental States, Empathy, and Burnout in Medical Contexts. Healthcare. 2021; 9(2):158. https://doi.org/10.3390/healthcare9020158

Chicago/Turabian Style

Delgado, Naira, Helena Bonache, Moisés Betancort, Yurena Morera, and Lasana T. Harris 2021. "Understanding the Links between Inferring Mental States, Empathy, and Burnout in Medical Contexts" Healthcare 9, no. 2: 158. https://doi.org/10.3390/healthcare9020158

Find Other Styles
Note that from the first issue of 2016, MDPI journals use article numbers instead of page numbers. See further details here.

Article Access Map by Country/Region

1
Back to TopTop