Burnout is highest among veterinary technicians and younger veterinary professionals and significantly less prominent among team members who are goal-setters or over age 61, according to a new study. The survey, conducted by Veterinary Integration Solutions, also revealed that the overall burnout rate rose from 2020 to 2021 and was higher among women than men. The factors likely driving burnout across the profession include pandemic-induced stress, expanded caseloads and staff shortages, the study found. Veterinary technicians pointed to additional reasons: low pay, underutilized skills, a lack of autonomy and insufficient emotional rewards. Veterinary Integration Solutions founder Ivan Zak, DVM, MBA, called for “a more targeted approach to burnout prevention.” “One of the key findings this year is that practitioners who had professional goals reported significantly less burnout and feel happier and more valued than those who did not,” Dr. Zak said. “It’s a practical takeaway that can be immediately instrumentalized by veterinary professionals and practice leaders.” Dr. Zak is CEO of Galaxy Vets, a fledgling network of veterinary practices. “Findings from this study will help Galaxy Vets, and hopefully other veterinary practices, design a burnout prevention program that considers specific challenges different groups face, based on their age, gender identity or role in the practice, and ultimately better tailor the work environment to their teams and their needs,” said Lauren Catenacci, Ph.D., the head of people and culture at Galaxy Vets. Nearly 87% of survey respondents reported that their employer doesn’t have a clearly defined burnout prevention program. Additional details are at bit.ly/3FnkRWf.
Study Sheds Light on a Rise in Burnout
Setting professional goals is one way to reduce the threat, the survey finds.
Did you know a subscription to Today’s Veterinary Business is free to qualified veterinary professionals? All you have to do is sign up here (and renew each year). You also can sign up to receive the Today’s Veterinary Business weekly e-newsletter.