A cost effective group interdisciplinary strategy for reducing burnout and improving mood states in long term care workers

Barry Bittman, MD, Karl T. Bruhn, Christine Stevens, MSW, MT-BC, James Westengard, and Paul O. Umbach, MA

Advances in Mind Body Medicine Fall/Winter 2003, VOL. 19, NO. ¾

ABSTRACT

Objectives: This controlled, prospective, randomized study examined the clinical and potential economic impact of a 6-session Recreational Music-making (RMM) protocol on burnout and mood dimensions, as well as on Total Mood Disturbance (TMD) in an interdisciplinary group of long-term care workers.

Methods: A total of 112 employees participated in a 6-session RMM protocol focusing on building support, communication, and interdisciplinary respect utilizing group drumming and keyboard accompaniment. Changes in burnout and mood dimensions were assessed with the Maslach Burnout Inventory and the Profile of Mood States respectively. Cost savings were projected by an independent consulting firm, which developed an economic impact model.

Results: Statistically-significant reductions of multiple burnout and mood dimensions, as well as TMD scores, were noted. Economic-impact analysis projected cost savings of $89,100 for a single typical 100-bed facility, with total annual potential savings to the long-term care industry of $1.46 billion.

Conclusions: A cost-effective, 6-session RMM protocol reduces burnout and mood dimensions, as well as TMD, in long-term care workers.

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