Associations between emotional intelligence and doctor burnout, job satisfaction and patient satisfaction

Hui Ching Weng, Chao Ming Hung, Yi Tien Liu, Yu Jen Cheng, Cheng Yo Yen, Chi Chang Chang, Chih Kun Huang

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

171 Citations (Scopus)


CONTEXT The occupational health literature has long been dominated by stress-related topics. A more contemporary perspective suggests using a positive approach in the form of a health model focused on what is right with people, such as feelings of well-being and satisfaction. OBJECTIVES Using a positive perspective and multi-source data collection, this study investigated the inter-relationships among emotional intelligence (EI), patient satisfaction, doctor burnout and job satisfaction. METHODS In this observational study, 110 internists and 2872 out-patients were surveyed in face-to-face interviews. RESULTS Higher self-rated EI was significantly associated with less burnout (p<0.001) and higher job satisfaction (p<0.001). Higher patient satisfaction was correlated with less burnout (p<0.01). Less burnout was found to be associated with higher job satisfaction (p<0.001). CONCLUSIONS This study identified EI as a factor in understanding doctors' work-related issues. Given the multi-dimensional nature of EI, refinement of the definition of EI and the construct validity of EI as rated by others require further examination.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)835-842
Number of pages8
JournalMedical Education
Issue number8
Publication statusPublished - 2011 Aug

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Education


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