Comparison of Moral Distress and Burnout Experienced by Mental Health Nurses in Japan and England : A Cross-sectional Questionnaire Survey

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  • 精神科看護師が経験した倫理的悩み : 質問紙調査による日本とイングランドの比較

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Aims: To compare moral distress and burnout experienced by mental health nurses in hospitals both in Japan and England. Methods: This is a cross-national study, and a cross-sectional design was adopted. An anonymous questionnaire containing 43 moral distress items, a 16 item burnout scale, and demographic data was administered to convenient samples; 391 nurses in Japan, and 460 nurses in England. Among the participants, 289 nurses (73.9%) in Japan, and 36 nurses (7.8%) in England responded. Results: The moral distress items which were commonly felt by nurses in both countries dealt with a lack of staff. Several differences, however, existed between the two, which reflected poor conditions such as long term social hospitalization in Japan. The nurses in England felt moral distress in a wider variety of situations, though they confront them less frequently than the nurses in Japan. Only in England was it found that the older nurses became, and the more experience they had accumulated, the less intensely they felt moral distress. The nurses in both countries felt the same levels of exhaustion, and cynicism, but as far as professional efficacy, the scores of the nurses in England were much higher than those of the nurses in Japan. Conclusions: If nurses feel no moral distress, there will be no improvements of care. Nurses should have moral sense, and do their best to improve the situations without being burned out.



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