Is it all about Depression? Determinants of Burnout among Employees Referred for Inpatient Treatment of Job-Related Stress Disorders

Schwarzkopf, Kathleen; Straus, Doris; Porschke, Hildburg; Znoj, Hansjörg; von Känel, Roland (2019). Is it all about Depression? Determinants of Burnout among Employees Referred for Inpatient Treatment of Job-Related Stress Disorders. Zeitschrift für psychosomatische Medizin und Psychotherapie, 65(2), pp. 183-197. Vandenhoeck & Ruprecht 10.13109/zptm.2019.65.2.183

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Objectives: There is an ongoing debate as to whether job burnout and depression are over- lapping concepts or differ from each other, although this has not been scrutinized in in- patients. To further elucidate the robustness of this relationship, we used three different measurements of depression. We further examined the influence of psychological distress, perceived stress and sleep quality in the link between depressive symptoms and burnout. Methods: We investigated 723 consecutive inpatients, aged 23 to 82 years, 51.2% women, referred to a hospital specialized in the treatment of job stress-related disorders. Patients completed the Maslach Burnout Inventory, the Beck Depression Inventory, the Hospital Anxiety and Depression Scale, the Brief Symptom Inventory, the Perceived Stress Scale, and the Pittsburgh Sleep Quality Index. Results: We found significant correlations between burnout total scores as well as subscales (emotional exhaustion, depersonalization, lack of accomplishment) and depressive symp- toms, virtually independent of the applied depression measure. The shared variance ranged between 1.1 % and 19.4 %. Greater levels of burnout were directly associated with cognitive- affective symptoms and, although to a lesser extent, also with somatic-affective symptoms of depression. In the multivariable analysis, significantly more total burnout symptoms were revealed in more depressed and younger patients, in men than women, and in employ- ees with greater levels of psychological distress and perceived stress, respectively. Conclusions: The findings suggest that although burnout and depression do not represent the same psychopathology, there is considerable overlap between the two constructs; the extent of this overlap may vary depending upon the applied depression measure.

Item Type:

Journal Article (Original Article)


07 Faculty of Human Sciences > Institute of Psychology
07 Faculty of Human Sciences > Institute of Psychology > Psychological and Behavioral Health

UniBE Contributor:

Znoj, Hans Jörg


100 Philosophy > 150 Psychology
600 Technology > 610 Medicine & health




Vandenhoeck & Ruprecht




Salome Irina Rahel Bötschi

Date Deposited:

07 Aug 2019 14:58

Last Modified:

22 Oct 2019 23:35

Publisher DOI:


PubMed ID:





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