Vol 3, No 1 (2018)
Published online: 2018-06-12

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Lukasz Czyzewski123, Grzegorz Moczulski4, Marek Kozluk4, Dariusz Daniluk4, Dawid Beczek4, Artur Karpiarz4, Pawel Panasewicz4, Krzysztof Izdebski4, Dominik Czarnocki4, Karol Tomaszewski4, Emilian Siemieniuk4, Adam Sobieski4, Jaroslaw Michalak4, Damian Wereda4, Kamil Mielczarek4, Marcin Madziala5
Disaster Emerg Med J 2018;3(1):5-11.


INTRODUCTION: The burnout syndrome is a result of stress on the work situation and most often concerns pro­fessions requiring emotional and direct contact with another human being. The level of empathy is closely related to the phenomenon of occupational burnout. The aim of the study was to determine the impact of socio-demo­graphic factors of emergency services employees on the level of empathy.

METHOD: In the period January–March 2018, a survey was conducted using a questionnaire — Emphatic Sensi­tiveness Scale (ESC) and an anonymous author’s questionnaire containing questions regarding sex, age, length of employment, occupation, marital status and number of hours worked per month. The survey was addressed to 81 employees of emergency services: paramedics (n = 17) and firefighters (n = 23). The control group consisted of 16 nurses and 25 people performing non–medical professions.

RESULTS: The average number of hours worked per month by the respondents was 189 ± 49. There were 50 fe­males (62%) and 31 males (38%). The questionnaire showed statistically significant differences in perspective taking domain between the control group composed of people working in non-medical professions (25.6 ± 4.3) and emergency services professionals: firefighter (28.7 ± 3.6) vs. paramedic (29.9 ± 3.5) vs. nurse (31.2 ± 3.0), p < 0.001. It has been shown a statistically significant effect of sex on personal distress domain: male (21.4 ± 4.2) vs. female (24.3 ± 4.7), p = 0.005.

CONCLUSIONS: In conclusion, our data indicates that: (1) Nurses were characterised by the highest level of empathy amongst the surveyed professional groups; (2) Females were characterised by a higher level of personal distress; (3) Variables such as sex, age, and length of employment did not affect the level of empathy.

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