The Prevalence of Medical Student Mistreatment and Its Association with Burnout

Published in Academic Medicine, the authors of the following study surveyed a nationally representative sample of third-year medical students. Students reported the frequency of mistreatment by attending faculty and residents since the beginning of their clinical rotations. Burnout was measured using a validated two-item version of the Maslach Burnout Inventory. The majority reported at least one incident of mistreatment by faculty and by residents. Notable minorities experienced recurrent mistreatment, defined as mistreatment categorized as “several” or “numerous” times by student self-report by faculty and 12.6%. Recurrent mistreatment was associated with high burnout. Although further investigation is needed to assess causality, these data provide additional impetus for medical schools to address student mistreatment to mitigate its adverse consequences on their personal and professional well-being.

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