DNP Scholarly Projects



Purpose: The purpose of this study was to assess whether or not, and the degree to which compassion satisfaction (CS), burnout (BO), and secondary traumatic stress (STS) are present among inpatient acute-care heart transplant nurses. Perceived presence of other contributing factors that contributed to CS, BO, and STS was also assessed.

Design: A cross-sectional survey-based mixed methods study with an explanatory sequential design was used to assess baseline levels of CS, BO, and STS and identify any other factors at work or home that may impact these constructs.

Methods: A Qualtrics survey was sent to potential participants. A convenience sample of 40 heart transplant nurses completed the survey. A one-way ANOVA was utilized to analyze quantitative study results, while qualitative data was analyzed using a qualitative descriptive approach.

Findings: No significant correlations were found between total nursing experience, CS, and STS. However, BO levels and total nursing experience was found to be significantly different in those with nursing experience of 3-6 years and 7-10 years. Nurses with 16+ years of heart transplant experience have higher overall CS scores than those with less experience. Qualitative responses identified 58 factors that impact CS, BO, and STS. Sixty-two percent of the factors noted by participants were negative work-related factors (n=36), 6% were positive work-related factors (n=4), 19% were negative home-related factors (n=11), and 12% were positive home-related factors (n=7).

Conclusion: Heart transplant nurses experience greater levels of burnout after working for 7-10 years and nurses with 16+ years’ experience greater levels of CS.

Keywords: transplant, heart transplant, compassion satisfaction, burnout, secondary traumatic stress, nursing, nurse


Spring 4-22-2022

First Advisor

Steven Busby

Scholarly Project Team Member

Jeannie Giese

Scholarly Project Team Member

David Phillippi


Nursing, School of


Health Sciences & Nursing, Gordon E. Inman College of

Document Type

Scholarly Project


Doctorate of Nursing Practice (DNP)

Degree Level


Degree Grantor

Belmont University


transplant, heart transplant, compassion satisfaction, burnout, secondary traumatic stress, nursing, nurse