Severe Burnout among Public Health Personnel in Penang District Health Office during COVID-19 Pandemic

Ahmad Hanis Ahmad Shushami, Mohd Faiz Itam, S.Kavepriya a/p Silvarajoo, Prassaad a/l Arujunan


The COVID-19 crisis put a strain on healthcare resources and increasing the risk of burnout. Most studies on health worker’s burnout only done among hospital worker and there was limited evidence regarding burnout among district health office worker. There were also no similar studies conducted in local settings. We did a cross-sectional study among 252 health care workers from a District Health Office, Penang using Maslach Burnout Inventory-General Survey (MBI-GS). The level of burnout found in this study was 31.87, which was extremely high. It almost three times the mean score of other studies that uses the same method in this country. Our findings indicate that those who involved with case investigation, sampling and those who had problems with another employee have higher risk of developing burnout. Age has been found to be a protective factor for burnout, where the older the person, the lesser their risk of developing burnout. This study concluded that the key important issue that needs to be tackled are to ease the workflow of case investigation and sampling, and to improve human resource management. Digitalisation is the only solution in easing the task of health workers, because to increase in number of workforces is not something that that can be done immediately. 


Burnout, professional, COVID-19, digital technology

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