Prevalence and predictors of burnout and work-life balance within the haematology cancer nursing workforce

Louise Gribben, Cherith J. Semple

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Purpose: The effects of burnout can have serious consequence for individual nurse’s, patients and healthcare organisations. The aim of this study was to assess prevalence and predictors of burnout and work-life balance amongst haemato-oncology nurses. 
Methods: This study employed a cross-sectional survey design. Haematology cancer nurses attending a 2-day conference in  Ireland, during Oct 2019 were recruited. Anonymised data were collected on:  1)  socio- demographics and occupational variables, 2)  burnout using Maslach Burnout Inventory and 3)  satisfaction with work-life balance. 
Results: There was an 80.4% survey completion rate (n =78 of 97). One-third of haemato-oncology nurses re-ported high levels of emotional exhaustion, with an additional 46% experiencing moderate levels. Despite this, 64% of nurses highlighted a moderate or high level of personal accomplishment. Demographics such as <40yrs old, unmarried, working ≥25hrs per week and having 6–10 years’ experience in haemato-oncology, all showed trends towards increased burnout, although none reached statistical significance. Over half (58%) surveyed were dissatisfied with their work-life balance. Nurses with dependent children had statistically significant poorer work-life balance scores. In  addition, one-third reported they did  not  receive adequate support or reasonable adjustments from their organisation, with inpatient nurses finding this particularly challenging. 
Relevance to clinical practice: Taking into consideration the high levels of burnout, healthcare organisations should have a  responsibility to  teach approaches of  stress management, self-care and foster resilience within their workforce. Oncology nurses with dependent children, working in in-patient settings, have identified a need for greater flexibility with working conditions, to improve work-life balance.
Original languageEnglish
Article number101973
Number of pages7
JournalEuropean Journal of Oncology Nursing
Early online date13 May 2021
Publication statusPublished - 1 Jun 2021


  • Oncology nurses
  • Cancer nursing
  • Burnout
  • Haematology
  • Occupational stress
  • Work-life balance


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