Title

Emergency medical technician schedule modification: impact and implications during short- and long-term follow-up

UMMS Affiliation

Department of Emergency Medicine

Publication Date

3-10-1998

Document Type

Article

Subjects

Adult; Attitude of Health Personnel; Burnout, Professional; Circadian Rhythm; *Emergency Medical Technicians; Female; Humans; *Job Satisfaction; Male; Stress, Psychological; *Work Schedule Tolerance

Disciplines

Emergency Medicine

Abstract

OBJECTIVE: To determine whether modifying work schedules from 24- to 12-hour shifts results in favorable improvements across a range of psychological and social variables among emergency medical technicians (EMTs).

METHOD: Sequential (before and after) surveys were completed voluntarily by EMTs at 1 month prior to, 2 months after, and 1 year after a workshift modification (change from 24- to 12-hour shifts). The surveys assessed job satisfaction, occupational burnout, and attitudes toward work schedules. The questionnaires were completed at emergency medical service stations.

RESULTS: Of 70 EMTs in the system, 51 (73%) completed the first 2 stages of this study; 35 (50%) completed all 3 stages. Paired-sample t-tests revealed significant differences between baseline and 2-month posttest scores on the following variables: the Maslach Burnout Inventory: Emotional Exhaustion Scale (less perceived exhaustion at 2 months); the Schedule Attitudes Survey: General Affect (perceived more positive view toward schedule at 2 months); Social/Family Impact (perceived less disruption of social/family life at 2 months); and Composite (less overall disruption in quality of life at 2 months). Statistically significant differences between baseline and 1-year posttest scores were found on the following: Schedule Attitudes Survey: General Affect (more positive view toward schedule at 1 year); Social/Family Impact (less disruption in social/family life at 1 year); and Composite (less overall disruption in quality of life at 1 year).

CONCLUSION: Modifying EMTs' work schedules from 24- to 12-hour shifts was associated with improvements in EMTs' general attitudes toward their schedules, less disruption of social and family life, and decreased levels of emotional exhaustion at 2 months after the change. While the improvements in EMTs' attitudes toward their schedules persisted at the 1-year follow-up, the measure of emotional exhaustion returned to baseline.

Source

Acad Emerg Med. 1998 Feb;5(2):128-33.

Journal/Book/Conference Title

Academic emergency medicine : official journal of the Society for Academic Emergency Medicine

Comments

At the time of publication, Edwin Boudreaux was not yet affiliated with the University of Massachusetts Medical School.

Related Resources

Link to Article in PubMed

PubMed ID

9492133

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