The practice of medicine is a calling. Doctors dedicate themselves to the wellness of their patients, and choose this path, in spite of knowing at the outset that it’s going to be demanding. They love being doctors, so why do they end up hating their employers?
One of the main reasons is the employee-physician model which is driving physician burnout. The burnout rate has increased from 33% in 2014 to 50% today. This measurement is strongly linked to medical errors, lower patient satisfaction, and higher staff turnover.
Reducing Physician Burnout
If physician employers are serious about reducing the burnout rate, they need to understand the reasons for the problem and change their modus operandi. To develop a better framework for physicians, they need to improve work conditions:
Let physicians focus on work that cannot be delegated, and provide adequate support staff to handle other tasks.
Set realistic workload expectations. It is unrealistic to expect a physician to put in a 12- to 14-hour work day, followed by 3 hours of maintaining and updating Electronic Health Records (EHRs). EHR systems need to be redesigned to align better with physician workflow.
Work/life balance which can be achieved by allowing for flexibility in scheduling. Employers may also conduct employee surveys to collect feedback that can be used to improve employee retention and reduce burnout rate. You may click here to see software solutions you can use for employee surveys.
Employers need to incorporate conditions that improve the work environment, and quality of life for the physician. If healthcare organizations want to attract and keep the best people, they need to alter the burnout trajectory for physicians.