U.S. Hospitals Feeling the Pain of Physician Burnout

U.S. Hospitals Feeling the Pain of Physician Burnout [REPRINT]

Source: Reuters Health News via MDLinx [11/22/17]


Hospitals are just beginning to recognize the toll of burnout on their operations

Experts estimate, for example, that it can cost more than $1 million to recruit and train a replacement for a doctor who leaves because of burnout. But, as no broad calculation of burnout costs exists, Dr. Tait Shanafelt, a former Mayo Clinic researcher who became Stanford Medicine’s first chief physician wellness officer in September said Stanford, Harvard Business School, Mayo Clinic, and the American Medical Association (AMA) are working on that. They have put together a comprehensive estimate of the costs of burnout at the organizational and societal level, which has been submitted to a journal for review.

Shanafelt and other researchers have shown that burnout erodes job performance, increases medical errors, and leads doctors to leave a profession they once loved.


 Hospitals can ill afford these added expenses in an era of tight margins, costly nursing shortages, and uncertainty over the fate of the Affordable Care Act, which has put capital projects and payment reform efforts on hold.


For a graphic, click here.


Sound familiar?





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5 Responses

  1. 38% of Doctors Are Pessimistic About Medicine Today

    Leavitt Partners recently released a white paper on physician attitudes toward the practice of medicine. Here are some key findings from the report:

    • 38% of doctors say they are pessimistic about the practice of medicine today.
    • 2 in 3 physicians aren’t confident in their practice’s financial stability.
    • Nearly half of doctors with 20+ years practicing medicine have a negative view.

    Source: Healthcare Dive, October 19, 2018


  2. Less Burnout Seen Among U.S. Physicians

    The burnout rate among physicians in the United States dropped modestly in 2017 from a peak in 2014 and currently stands near 2011 levels, according to a newly released triennial study published in Mayo Clinic Proceedings. While acknowledging progress, the American Medical Association (AMA) today warned more needs to be done to reduce physician burnout and called on leaders in the healthcare system to remain focused on driving research, interventions,workflow and teamwork enhancements, policy changes, and technology improvements.

    The new triennial study conducted by researchers from the AMA, the Mayo Clinic, and Stanford University School of Medicine found 43.9 percent of U.S. physicians exhibited at least one symptom of burn out in 2017, compared with 54.4 percent in 2014 and 45.5 percent in 2011. In comparison, the overall prevalence of burnout among U.S. workers was 28.1 percent in 2017, similar to levels found in 2014 (28.4 percent) and 2011 (28.6 percent).

    Source: AMA [2/22/19]


  3. Burnout Video

    From Pam Wible MD:

    View this post on Instagram

    PART 1–BURNOUT is BULLSHIT. Since 2015, I’ve advised doctors to stop using the word “burnout.” Here’s why. Each year our best and brightest, most compassionate students enter medicine—a career with the highest suicide rate of any profession. Each year more than 1 million Americans lose their doctors to suicide. Jumping from hospital rooftops. Found hanging in hospital chapels. Classic response? Blame the victim, then cover up the suicide with medicine’s favorite victim-blaming buzzword—burnout—a slang word from the 1970s for end-stage drug addiction—now weirdly applied to doctors! Here’s how it works . . . Physician “burnout” blames the victim NOT the medical system that actually kills doctors—and patients! Plus it’s a cash cow for physician predators and profiteers—all the burnout coaches cannibalizing the corpses of their colleagues—divided and conquered by bullying, hazing, and sleep deprivation—the foundation of medical training that forces new med school grads to legally work 28-hour shifts treating heart attacks, gunshot victims, and delivering stillborns—with no debriefing for their trauma. No bathroom breaks. No time to eat, surgeons collapse from dehydration and hypoglycemia. Here’s a doc found sleeping on an elderly comatose woman while starting her IV. (All true stories) An ICU doc forced to keep working during a seizure. Another doctor working while miscarrying her baby. Full video & transcript with solutions in bio link 👆👆🏼👆🏽👆🏾👆🏿

    A post shared by Pamela Wible (@pamelawiblemd) on



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