Assessment of Burnout in Healthcare Professionals of Pakistan Amid COVID-19 – A Cross-Sectional Study

Main Article Content

Nisha Zahid
Marium Syed
Sharmake Hersi
Syed Hasan Danish
Farah Ahmed


Introduction: According to WHO latest by March 19th 2021, it has now become a global threat with globally 122,665,852 confirmed cases and 2,707,206 deaths involving 220 countries.. NIH Pakistan has reported the national tally of COVID 19 cases in Pakistan to 543,214 and total deaths 11,683, making it an extremely serious issue in Pakistan like in the rest of the world. Physicians, consultants, paramedics and other staff working in hospitals are at risk due to the emergence of COVID-19 which also is responsible for severe burnout in the specialties who are working at the frontline. Burnout affects job performance, job satisfaction, interpersonal relationships, and vulnerability to illnesses [1]. This research aims at finding the burnout in healthcare professionals of Karachi, Pakistan due to the current situation of COVID-19 pandemic.

Materials and Methods: It is a cross-sectional study carried out in the tertiary care hospitals of Karachi, Pakistan from Feb’2020 – Apr’ 2020 in which the questionnaire based on Malsch burnout inventory were distributed amongst the healthcare professionals including doctors and paramedics, working at the front in departments of emergency, covid special units and other areas. A scoring system of 1-4 was applied (strongly disagree-strongly agree).

Results: The results of this study showed that highest burnout was faced by healthcare professionals in the category of depersonalization and personal accomplishment amid COVID-19 while the association between the burnout and the demographic factors mentioned was also found to be significant. Moreover, the challenges faced by the healthcare professionals to the maximum owing to this pandemic were found to be lack of presence of personal protective equipment and fear to spread the infection to family.

Conclusion: The study concluded that the current pandemic situation of COVID-19 has been significantly associated with the burnout and stress amongst the health care professionals in tertiary hospitals of Karachi, Pakistan, particularly those who are working on the frontline.

COVID-19, healthcare professionals, burnout, infection

Article Details

How to Cite
Zahid, N., Syed, M., Hersi, S., Danish, S. H., & Ahmed, F. (2021). Assessment of Burnout in Healthcare Professionals of Pakistan Amid COVID-19 – A Cross-Sectional Study. International Journal of TROPICAL DISEASE & Health, 42(5), 34-41.
Original Research Article


Chemali Z, Ezzeddine F, Gelaye B, Dossett M, Salameh J, Bizri M, Dubale B, Fricchione G. Burnout among healthcare providers in the complex environment of the Middle East: A systematic review. BMC public health. 2019;19:1337.

Dyrbye LN, Shanafelt TD, Sinsky CA, Cipriano PF, Bhatt J, Ommaya A, West CP, Meyers D. Burnout among health care professionals: A call to explore and address this underrecognized threat to safe, high-quality care. NAM perspectives; 2017.

Imo UO. Burnout and psychiatric morbidity among doctors in the UK: A systematic literature review of prevalence and associated factors. BJPsych bulletin. 2017;41:197-204.

Baruah A, Das S, Dutta A, Das B, Sharma T, Hazarika M. degree and factors of burnout among emergency healthcare workers in India. International journal of scientific research (Ahmedabad, India). 2019;8:41.

Zarei E, Ahmadi F, Sial MS, Hwang J, Thu PA, Usman SM. Prevalence of burnout among primary health care staff and its predictors: A study in Iran. International journal of environmental research and public health. 2019;16:2249.

Ahorsu DK, Lin CY, Imani V, Saffari M, Griffiths MD, Pakpour AH. The fear of COVID-19 scale: Development and initial validation. International Journal of Mental Health and Addiction. 2020;1.

Watkins J. Preventing a COVID-19 pandemic. British Medical Journal Publishing Group; 2020.

Kim JS, Choi JS. Factors influencing emergency nurses' burnout during an outbreak of middle east respiratory syndrome coronavirus in Korea. Asian nursing research. 2016;10: 295-299.

Maunder RG, Lancee WJ, Balderson KE, Bennett JP, Borgundvaag B, Evans S, Fernandes CM, et al. Long-term psychological and occupational effects of providing hospital healthcare during SARS outbreak. Emerging infectious diseases. 2006;12:1924.

Bukhari N, Rasheed H, Nayyer B, Babar ZUD. Pharmacists at the frontline beating the COVID-19 pandemic. Springer; 2020.

Wang C, Pan R, Wan X, Tan Y, Xu L, Ho CS, Ho RC. Immediate psychological responses and associated factors during the initial stage of the 2019 coronavirus disease (COVID-19) epidemic among the general population in china. International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health. 2020;17:1729.

Shanafelt T, Ripp J, Trockel M. Understanding and addressing sources of anxiety among health care professionals during the COVID-19 pandemic. Jama; 2020.

Hameed TK, Masuadi E, Al Asmary NA, Al-Anzi FG, Al Dubayee MS. A study of resident duty hours and burnout in a sample of Saudi residents. BMC medical education. 2018;18:180.

Patel RS, Bachu R, Adikey A, Malik M, Shah M.. Factors related to physician burnout and its consequences: a review. Behavioral Sciences. 2018;8: 98.

Kumar S. Burnout and doctors: Prevalence, prevention and intervention. Healthcare, Multidisciplinary Digital Publishing Institute. 2016;37.

Kim Y, Seo E, Seo Y, Dee V, Hong E. Effects of middle east respiratory syndrome coronavirus on post-traumatic stress disorder and burnout among registered nurses in South Korea; 2018.

Chughtai AA, Khan W. Use of personal protective equipment to protect against respiratory infections in Pakistan: A systematic review. Journal of infection and public health; 2020.

Nagesh S, Chakraborty S. The frontline health workforce amidst the COVID-19 crisis: Challenges and recommendations. Journal of Global Health. 2020;Saving10.

Osama M, Zaheer F, Saeed H, Anees K, Jawed Q, Syed SH, Sheikh BA. Impact of COVID-19 on surgical residency programs in Pakistan; A residents' perspective. Do programs need formal restructuring to adjust with the" new normal"? A cross-sectional survey study. International Journal of Surgery; 2020.

Bhagavathula AS, Aldhaleei WA, Rahmani J, Mahabadi MA, Bandari DK. Knowledge and perceptions of COVID-19 among health care workers: Cross-sectional study. JMIR Public Health and Surveillance. 2020;6:e19160.

Lopez V, Chan KS, Wong YCJ. Nursing care of patients with severe acute respiratory syndrome in the intensive care unit: Case reports in Hong Kong. International journal of nursing studies. 2004;41:263-272.

Smereka J, Szarpak L. The use of personal protective equipment in the COVID-19 pandemic era. The American journal of emergency medicine; 2020.

Mukhtar S. Preparedness and proactive infection control measures of Pakistan during COVID-19 pandemic outbreak. Research in Social & Administrative Pharmacy; 2020.

Li S, Wang Y, Xue J, Zhao N, Zhu T. The impact of COVID-19 epidemic declaration on psychological consequences: a study on active Weibo users. International journal of environmental research and public health. 2020;17:2032.

Sasangohar F, Jones SL, Masud FN, Vahidy FS, Kash BA. Provider burnout and fatigue during the COVID-19 pandemic: Lessons learned from a high-volume intensive care unit. Anesthesia and analgesia; 2020.

Sarwar S, Waheed R, Sarwar S, Khan A. COVID-19 challenges to Pakistan: Is GIS analysis useful to draw solutions? Science of The Total Environment. 2020;139089.