Berks County Medical Society Medical Record Spring_2018 - 12

Physician Burnout

BCMS Member
"Pain Points"
We asked a few of our members to list
their personal top 3 'pain points' (factors
which detract from the joy of practicing
medicine). Here are their responses:

1.

Hospital administration rather than
physicians making program decisions

2.

Not having funds budgeted to build
and implement important programs

3.

Occasional acknowledgement of a job
well done would be welcome.

1.

Insurance pre-certification

2.

Coding/billing

3.

Visit documentation time greater than
time actually spent with patient in
many cases

1.

Negative physician/hospital
administration attitudes

2.

Societal "me, me, me" focus

3.

Lack of time to establish relationships
with patients and families and discuss
their needs and fears

1.

Student debt

2.

Lack of personal time

3.

Lack of sleep

12

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Wellness and
physician burnout
by Accamma Joy, D.O., Penn State Health St. Joseph

W

ellness and physician burnout remain hot topics in the medical literature.
Various medical societies and organizations have engaged initiatives to
place this subject at the forefront of discussion and action. Here at Penn
State Health St. Joseph (PSHSJ), a subgroup of the hospital's Physician Leadership
Program formed a small, collective working group to address physician/provider
burnout and wellness. The grassroots team, initiated in May of 2017, consists of five
physicians and a behavioral health scientist that feel compelled to make wellness a
priority at PSHSJ.
The committee named its venture the Physician/Provider Wellness Initiative
with a primary goal of changing the focus from "Physician/Provider Burnout" to
"Physician/Provider Resiliency." The self-initiated group cited several reasons to
address wellness for all providers in the PSHSJ health system, including concerns of
providers' burnout at PSHSJ and national information about physician burnout and
suicide. Providers may not know they are burned out, but in reality, may be because
of the expectation to function at high stress levels. Expecting individuals to function
at higher levels of stress has become a norm in medical and many other industries.
Providers may be embarrassed to talk about burnout because of the expectation that
medicine is naturally challenging in many ways and thus, inevitably, leads to high
stress and potential burnout. Nationally, physicians have higher rates of suicide than
the normal population. Depression continues to be a stigmatized topic among most
medical professionals. Combining the above with a lack of autonomy or a lack of
purpose, physicians/providers may have less sense of purpose, which is recognized as
being associated with burnout. In alignment with the Quadruaple Aim¬łthe committee
wants to raise necessary attention to caring for providers as a part of healthcare
delivery.
Prior to developing and integrating interventions, the committee recognized
the need for a baseline pulse of the medical staff's burnout/wellness. The Maslach
Burnout Inventory (MBI), a well-validated and reliable instrument, was administered
to the medical staff in the fall, with plans to administer it at least annually. The
survey addresses three aspects of burnout: emotional exhaustion with feelings of being
emotionally overextended and exhausted by one's work, depersonalization with an
unfeeling and impersonal response toward recipients of one's service, care treatment,
or instruction and personal accomplishment with feelings of competence and successful
achievement in one's work. Additional questions were included with the study and
aimed to understand some of the challenges and potential solutions for increasing
provider wellness and resiliency at PSHSJ.


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Berks County Medical Society Medical Record Spring_2018

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