Mindfulness-Based Program Found to cut back Anxiety and Stress Among Healthcare Professionals

A mindfulness-based program implemented at the Clinical Center at the National Institutes of Health (NIH) in Bethesda, Maryland, was found to lessen stress among healthcare professionals effectively. Program results, published in JAMA Network Open, support the widespread implementation of mindfulness-based self-care (MBSC) at other healthcare institutions in america.

between September 2017 and might 2018 at the NIH Clinical Center

This intent-to-treat randomized clinical trial was conducted, a biomedical research hospital. NIH employees were recruited through group flyers and emails. Participants were randomized to at least one 1 of 2 conditions: the MBSC group or the life-as-usual control group. The MBSC group comprised 5 weekly, 1.5-hour mindfulness practice sessions conducted at the NIH main campus during work hours. At-home mindfulness practice was also encouraged, and educational materials were provided to steer at-home sessions.

Outcomes included stress and anxiety levels, assessed utilising the Perceived Stress Scale 10-item version (PSS-10) and Visual Analog Scale – Anxiety (VAS-A), respectively. Assessments were conducted at baseline, postintervention (week 5), and follow-up (week 13) by self-report. Feasibility was measured as a function of participant satisfaction and adherence with the MBSC condition.

Of 82 randomized participants, 78 completed 5 weeks of the scholarly study and were within the intent-to-treat analysis. The median age of study completers was 32 years (interquartile range [IQR], 23-48 years), and most (83%) were women. Overall, 43 were randomized to the MBSC group, and 35 were randomized to the life-as-usual group. At the post-intervention assessment (week 5), the MBSC group had significantly lower quantities of stress (mean [SD] PSS-10 score: 17.29 [5.84] vs 18.54 [6.30]; P =.02) and anxiety (mean [SD] VAS-A score: 2.58 [1.52] vs 4.23 [1.73]; P <.001) set alongside the control group. The MBSC group experienced substantial reductions at week 5 set alongside the baseline in stress (change in PSS-10 score, -2.50; 95% CI, -4.28 to -0.72; P =.009) and anxiety (change in VAS-A score, -2.13; 95% CI, -2.79 to -1.48; P <.001). The week 13 follow-up assessment at, reductions in stress (-6.14; 95% CI, -7.84 to -4.44; P <.001) and anxiety (-1.46; 95% CI, -1.97 to -0.94; P <.001) were maintained in the MBSC group.

Retention was full of the MBSC condition. Of 43 participants, 35 completed the scheduled program, causing an adherence rate of 81.4%. The general quality of this system was rated “great” to “excellent” by 34 participants (97.1%). Additionally, 32 participants (91.4%) reported that the course was helpful and improved their overall total well being.

These data support the efficacy and feasibility of a mindfulness-based education program for healthcare professionals at a biomedical research facility in the usa. The little cohort and single study site limit data generalization. Replication at other institutions is important to ensure these findings. “Engaging both individual and organizational involvement toward reducing stress and enhancing mindfulness may have far-reaching effects on employee health, patient outcomes, and organizational success,” the investigators wrote.


Ameli R, Sinaii N, West CP, et al. Effect of a quick mindfulness-based program on stress in medical care professionals at a US biomedical research hospital: a randomized clinical trial [published online August 25, 2020]. JAMA Netw Open. doi:10.1001/jamanetworkopen.2020.13424