The transition to hospital consultant and the influence of preparedness, social support, and perception: A structural equation modelling approach

Michiel Westerman*, Pim W. Teunissen, Joanne P. I. Fokkema, Cees P. M. Van der Vleuten, Albert J. J. A. Scherpbier, Carl E. H. Siegert, Fedde Scheele

*Corresponding author for this work

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Background: Insight into the transition from specialist registrar to hospital consultant is needed to better align specialty training with starting as a consultant and to facilitate this transition. Aims: This study investigates whether preparedness regarding medical and generic competencies, perceived intensity, and social support are associated with burnout among new consultants. Method: A population-based study among all 2643 new consultants in the Netherlands (all specialties) was conducted in June 2010. A questionnaire covering preparedness for practice, intensity of the transition, social support, and burnout was used. Structural equation modelling was used for statistical analysis. Results: Data from a third of the population were available (32% n = 840) (43% male/57% female). Preparation in generic competencies received lower ratings than in medical competencies. A total of 10% met the criteria for burnout and 18% scored high on the emotional exhaustion subscale. Perceived lack of preparation in generic competencies correlated with burnout (r = 0.15, p <0.001). No such relation was found for medical competencies. Furthermore, social support protected against burnout. Conclusions: These findings illustrate the relevance of generic competencies for new hospital consultants. Furthermore, social support facilitates this intense and stressful stage within the medical career.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)320-327
JournalMedical Teacher
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - 2013

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