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Enferm Intensiva. 2013 Jul-Sep;24(3):104-12. doi: 10.1016/j.enfi.2013.06.001. Epub 2013 Aug 7.

[Work setting, satisfaction and burnout of the nurses in critical care units and hospitalization units. RN4CAST-Spain project].

[Article in Spanish]

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Hospital Universitario Vall d'Hebron, Universidad Autónoma de Barcelona, Barcelona, España. Electronic address:



To know if there are differences between the critical care units and the medical-surgical care units regarding the perception of the nurses working in National Health System hospitals about their work environment, burnout level and job satisfaction.


A cross-sectional study was conducted with 6,417 nurses from the medical-surgical care units and with 1,122 nurses from critical care units of 59 Spanish hospitals with more than 150 beds. Socio-demographic, job satisfaction, perception of work environment (Practice Environment Scale of the Nursing Work Index [PES-NWI questionnaire]) and burnout measured with the Maslach Burnout Inventory (MBI) data were collected.


The PES-NWI showed differences in 4 out of its 5 factors. It showed better values in medical-surgical units in all the factors, except for Staffing and resource adequacy (P<.001), where critical care units showed a mean level of agreement of 2.41 versus 2.19 for the medical-surgical units. Regarding burnout, this was higher in the medical-surgical care units (P=.039) where 23% (952) of the nurses had high levels. Job satisfaction was lower in the critical care units (P=.044) with 70% (578) of nurses being very or strongly satisfied.


The opinion of the nurses, working in critical care units about their hospital is unfavorable. They showed lower levels of burnout than those working in medical-surgical units.


Burnout; Critical care; Cuidados críticos; Entorno laboral; Maslach Burnout Inventory; Nursing staff; Personal de enfermería; Practice Environment Scale of the Nursing Work Index; Work environment

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