259489 Physician Stress and Burnout: Cause, Effect, Cost and What Can Be Done About It

Tuesday, October 30, 2012 : 3:30 PM - 3:50 PM

Alan Rosenstein, MD, MBA , Medical Director, Physician Wellness Services, Minneapolis, MN
It's a well known fact that physicians are increasingly stressed and burned out—it's an issue that impacts their work performance and patient safety, as well as their satisfaction with their jobs and careers. For administrators, the effects which they have to deal with can range from increased medical errors and risk of malpractice suits, to disruptive behavior directed at patients and co-workers, and, ultimately, turnover. Stress and burnout increase the risk that more physicians will leave clinical roles or even the profession, entirely, shrinking the pool of physicians at a time of shortages and stagnant medical school enrollment.

In the fall of 2011, Physician Wellness Services and Cejka Search conducted an in-depth, nationwide, multi-specialty survey on stress and burnout in physicians. The goal was to gain a better understanding not only of prevalence, but also causation across the external environment, in the workplace and at home, and the resulting impact on physicians' personal and professional lives. It also sought to determine what physicians, themselves, were doing to deal with stress and burnout—and what they were looking for to assist in that from their organizations. These results provide valuable insight into what administrators can do to understand and, subsequently, address stress and burnout in their organizations.

Learning Areas:
Administration, management, leadership

Learning Objectives:
Design wellness programs for the physicians they employ to help them cope with the stressors in their lives. Identify and address organizational factors that may be contributing toward physician stress and burnout. Demonstrate an increased understanding of and commitment to physician well-being to the existing physician population and potential candidates. Formulate retention and recruitment strategies and initiatives to reduce turnover.

Presenting author's disclosure statement:

Qualified on the content I am responsible for because: I am the medical director of Physician Wellness Services. I am a published author and frequent lecturer on topics like care process improvement, physician management and patient safety. My seminal research on the impact of disruptive behavior on nurse-physician relationships, and its effects on patient safety and operational issues, have been instrumental in helping healthcare organizations recognize the importance of dealing with workplace conflict and improving communications.
Any relevant financial relationships? No

I agree to comply with the American Public Health Association Conflict of Interest and Commercial Support Guidelines, and to disclose to the participants any off-label or experimental uses of a commercial product or service discussed in my presentation.