Background: This study evaluates the stresses and satisfactions experienced by health care and social service providers working in HIV/AIDS service agencies in New York City. This study was part of the Ryan White Title I Evaluation in New York City. Methods: This study is based on semi- structured interviews with 86 randomly sampled providers from a representative sample of 29 HIV/AIDS service agencies. Personal interviews were completed with a cross section of AIDS care providers. All staff interviewed were audiotaped to facilitate data analysis. Staff discussed their frustrations and their personal satisfaction at working in AIDS care. In addition, all staff completed the Maslach Burnout Inventory (MBI) to facilitate a structured comparison of their levels of burnout. Results: Using the three subscales of the MBI, we found that interviewed AIDS care providers experienced lower than expected levels of burnout. Compared to national norms, health care and social service providers showed above-average levels of personal accomplishment, below-average levels of depersonalization, and average levels of emotional exhaustion. Interview transcripts were analyzed focusing on three broad themes: unique stressors of HIV/AIDS services, positive aspects of HIV/AIDS services, and effective provider supports. The study confirms that HIV/AIDS care providers feel a high level of personal commitment to working with HIV-positive clients. Personal commitment to HIV- positive clients may blunt some of the stresses associated with HIV/AIDS care.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health