Posted March 28, 2016
A series of studies published in The Journal of the American Medical Association (JAMA) in December 2015 remind us that physician burnout can and does occur among our medical students, residents, and fellows. Feelings of emotional exhaustion, lack of impact, and depersonalization of patients and staff have been observed among physicians-in-training for decades. In a large meta-analysis, researchers found that 21-43% of residents manifested symptoms of depression, compared with rates of 10-20% among practicing physicians.
Posted March 21, 2016
Physician burnout is increasingly prevalent in the medical community today. A contributing factor is that healthcare providers may feel their judgment and ability to provide quality care to their patients is constantly being challenged. A research report by the Rand Corporation, sponsored by the American Medical Association, reported, “When physicians perceived themselves as providing high-quality care or their practices as facilitating their delivery of such care, they reported better professional satisfaction.”
Posted March 18, 2016
Dr. Daniel Meltzer, a Studer Group Physician coach and immediate past Chief of Emergency Medicine at Kaiser Permanente in San Diego, CA, and Jeff Wood, a registered nurse with more than 30 years in emergency services leadership, sat down to discuss their own experiences leading in dyad partnerships, and how emergency departments in particular can benefit from this team-based approach.
Posted March 14, 2016
For at least five years, it’s been fairly easy to find a well-done study to affirm the epidemic of physician burnout. Most recently, Dr. Shanafelt and colleagues at the Mayo Clinic surveyed 36,000 physicians using the gold standard instrument (Maslach Burnout Inventory), and found that 54% of physicians reported some degree of emotional exhaustion, depersonalization, or low level of accomplishment, compared with the general working population at 28% (Mayo Clin Proc Dec 2015).
Posted March 10, 2016
Thank you notes are one of the most cost-effective ways to deliver reward and recognition, which in turn builds critical employee engagement. High-performing organizations realize that people are more engaged and more willing to go the extra mile when leaders frequently express their appreciation—verbally and/or in thank you notes.
Posted March 07, 2016
Studies examining the scope and magnitude of burnout reveal that Emergency Medicine is one of the specialties most heavily impacted1 by this professional ailment which likewise impacts other "front-line" specialties2. Why is this the case? The list might include unpredictability, patient volume, health safety net, flow impediments, electronic health records, physical and emotional challenges, shift work, lack of support and working conditions.
Posted February 29, 2016
As an oncologist I know that that caring for patients with cancer has many rewards and privileges. However, it can also come at a price. Cancer specialists frequently deliver bad news, administer toxic treatments, and care for patients suffering from diseases that they may not be able to cure. Not surprisingly, studies have indicated that burnout is a real risk among cancer care professionals.
Posted February 19, 2016
Burned-out physicians can express exaggerated anger and disappointment to colleagues, staff and even patients. But behaviorally-impaired physicians (“disruptive physicians”) can too. Is it possible to differentiate one type of troubled physician from the other? Yes. Does it matter? Also yes.
Posted February 15, 2016
The research and literature on physician burnout is staggering. Not only are physicians burning out at rapid rates, data also shows physicians are working longer hours than in the past. Adults employed full time in the U.S. report working an average of 47 hours per week (Gallup Work and Education Poll, 2014). Most physicians work between 40 and 60 hours per week, but nearly one-quarter of physicians work between 61 and 80 hours per week (2014 Work/Life Profiles of Todays Physicians, AMA Insurance).
Posted February 08, 2016
For me it began in the early ‘90’s. I was new in practice, excited, and eager to meet colleagues. I introduced myself to physicians and nurses in the hospital both to meet them and also let them know that I was available to take on new patients. Most of my relationships in the community were formed in the hospital. I discussed interesting cases and referrals with specialists - all was good. And then, it changed.