Research Article| Volume 20, ISSUE 3, P135-143, June 2006

Hopelessness and Suicide Risk Emerge in Psychiatric Nurses Suffering From Burnout and Using Specific Defense Mechanisms

      Burnout in psychiatric nurses is a phenomenon of great concern. We conducted an investigation of 120 nurses working in the psychiatric, general medicine/rehabilitation, and critical care/surgery wards to explore the correlations of level of burnout and defense mechanisms with hopelessness. The nurses were administered the Maslach Burnout Inventory, Gleser and Ihilevich's Defense Mechanisms Inventory, and Beck's Hopelessness Scale. The results indicate that burnout and some of the defense mechanisms predicted the level of hopelessness—a predictor of suicide risk.
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