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1.
Mayo Clin Proc ; 97(3): 491-506, 2022 03.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1712863

ABSTRACT

OBJECTIVE: To evaluate the prevalence of burnout and satisfaction with work-life integration (WLI) among physicians and US workers in 2020 relative to 2011, 2014, and 2017. METHODS: Between November 20, 2020, and March 23, 2021, we surveyed US physicians and a probability-based sample of the US working population using methods similar to our prior studies. Burnout and WLI were measured using standard tools. Information about specific work-related COVID-19 experiences was collected. RESULTS: There were 7510 physicians who participated in the survey. Nonresponder analysis suggested that participants were representative of US physicians. Mean emotional exhaustion and depersonalization scores were lower in 2020 than in 2017, 2014, and 2011 (all P<.001). However, emotional exhaustion and depersonalization scores did not improve in specialties most heavily affected by COVID-19. Overall, 38.2% of physicians reported 1 or more symptoms of burnout in 2020 compared with 43.9% in 2017, 54.4% in 2014, and 45.5% in 2011 (all P<.001). Providing care without adequate personal protective equipment (odds ratio [OR], 1.53; 95% CI, 1.35 to 1.72) and having suffered disruptive economic consequences due to COVID-19 (OR, 1.49; 95% CI, 1.32 to 1.69) were independently associated with risk of burnout. On multivariable analysis, physicians were at increased risk for burnout (OR, 1.41; 95% CI, 1.25 to 1.58) and were less likely to be satisfied with WLI (OR, 0.71; 95% CI, 0.64 to 0.79) than other working US adults. CONCLUSION: Burnout and satisfaction with WLI among US physicians improved between 2017 and 2020. The impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on physicians varies on the basis of professional characteristics and experiences. Physicians remain at increased risk for burnout relative to workers in other fields.


Subject(s)
Burnout, Professional/epidemiology , COVID-19 , Job Satisfaction , Physicians/psychology , Work-Life Balance , Adult , Aged , Female , Humans , Male , Middle Aged , Prevalence , Time Factors , United States
4.
JCO Oncol Pract ; 18(1): e60-e71, 2022 Jan.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1403282

ABSTRACT

PURPOSE: Provider well-being has become the fourth pillar of the quadruple aim for providing quality care. Exacerbated by the global COVID-19 pandemic, provider well-being has become a critical issue for health care systems worldwide. We describe the prevalence and key system-level drivers of burnout in oncologists in Ontario, Canada. METHODS: This is a cross-sectional survey study conducted in November-December 2019 of practicing cancer care physicians (surgical, medical, radiation, gynecologic oncology, and hematology) in Ontario, Canada. Ontario is Canada's largest province (with a population of 14.5 million), and has a single-payer publicly funded cancer system. The primary outcome was burnout experience assessed through the Maslach Burnout Inventory. RESULTS: A total of 418 physicians completed the questionnaire (response rate was 44% among confirmed oncologists). Seventy-three percent (n = 264 of 362) of oncologists had symptoms of burnout (high emotional exhaustion and/or depersonalization scores). Significant drivers of burnout identified in multivariable regression modeling included working in a hectic or chaotic atmosphere (odds ratio [OR] = 15.5; 95% CI, 3.4 to 71.5; P < .001), feeling unappreciated on the job (OR = 7.9; 95% CI, 2.9 to 21.3; P < .001), reporting poor or marginal control over workload (OR = 7.9; 95% CI, 2.9 to 21.3; P < .001), and not being comfortable talking to peers about workplace stress (OR = 3.0; 95% CI, 1.1 to 7.9; P < .001). Older age (≥ 56 years) was associated with lower odds of burnout (OR = 0.16; 95% CI, 0.1 to 0.4; P < .001). CONCLUSION: Nearly three quarters of participants met predefined standardized criteria for burnout. This number is striking, given the known impact of burnout on provider mental health, patient safety, and quality of care, and suggests Oncologists in Ontario may be a vulnerable group that warrants attention. Health care changes being driven by the COVID-19 pandemic provide an opportunity to rebuild new systems that address drivers of burnout. Creating richer peer-to-peer and leadership engagement opportunities among early- to mid-career individuals may be a worthwhile organizational strategy.


Subject(s)
Burnout, Professional , COVID-19 , Neoplasms , Physicians , Aged , Burnout, Professional/epidemiology , Burnout, Psychological , Cross-Sectional Studies , Female , Humans , Job Satisfaction , Ontario/epidemiology , Pandemics , Prevalence , SARS-CoV-2 , Workplace
5.
Mayo Clin Proc ; 96(8): 2067-2080, 2021 08.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1322265

ABSTRACT

OBJECTIVE: To evaluate the prevalence of suicidal ideation (SI) and attitudes regarding help seeking among US physicians relative to the general US working population. PARTICIPANTS AND METHODS: A secondary analysis of a cross-sectional survey of US physicians and a probability-based sample of the US working population was conducted between October 12, 2017, and March 15, 2018. Among 30,456 invited physicians, 5197 (17.1%) completed the primary survey. Suicidal ideation in the last year, attitudes regarding help seeking, symptoms of depression, and burnout were assessed by standardized questions. RESULTS: Among the 4833 physicians who responded regarding SI, 316 (6.5%) reported having suicidal thoughts in the last 12 months. Most physicians (3527 [72.9%]) reported that they would seek professional help if they had a serious emotional problem. Physicians with SI were less likely to report that they would seek help (203/316 [64.2%]) than physicians without SI (3318/4517 [73.5%]; P=.001). On multivariable analysis, symptoms of depression (odds ratio [OR], 4.42; 95% CI, 1.89 to 11.52), emotional exhaustion (OR, 1.07 each 1-point increase; 95% CI, 1.03 to 1.11), and self-valuation (OR, 0.84 each 1-point increase; 95% CI, 0.70 to 0.99) were associated with SI. Among individuals aged 29 to 65 years, physicians were more likely than workers in other fields to report SI (7.1% vs 4.3%; P<.001), a finding that persisted on multivariable analysis. CONCLUSION: In this national study conducted before the COVID-19 pandemic, 1 in 15 US physicians had thoughts of taking their own life in the last year, which exceeded the prevalence of SI among US workers in other fields.


Subject(s)
Burnout, Professional/epidemiology , Help-Seeking Behavior , Physicians/psychology , Suicidal Ideation , Adult , Aged , Cross-Sectional Studies , Depression/epidemiology , Female , Humans , Male , Middle Aged , Self-Assessment , Surveys and Questionnaires , United States/epidemiology
6.
JCO Oncol Pract ; 17(7): e427-e438, 2021 07.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1278136

ABSTRACT

INTRODUCTION: The COVID-19 pandemic is an unprecedented global crisis profoundly affecting oncology care delivery. PURPOSE: This study will describe the occupational and personal consequences of the COVID-19 pandemic on oncologist well-being and patient care. MATERIALS AND METHODS: Four virtual focus groups were conducted with US ASCO member oncologists (September-November 2020). Inquiry and subsequent discussions centered on self-reported accounts of professional and personal COVID-19 experiences affecting well-being, and oncologist recommendations for well-being interventions that the cancer organization and professional societies (ASCO) might implement were explored. Qualitative interviews were analyzed using Framework Analysis. RESULTS: Twenty-five oncologists were interviewed: median age 44 years (range: 35-69 years), 52% female, 52% racial or ethnic minority, 76% medical oncologists, 64% married, and an average of 51.5 patients seen per week (range: 20-120). Five thematic consequences emerged: (1) impact of pre-COVID-19 burnout, (2) occupational or professional limitations and adaptations, (3) personal implications, (4) concern for the future of cancer care and the workforce, and (5) recommendations for physician well-being interventions. Underlying oncologist burnout exacerbated stressors associated with disruptions in care, education, research, financial practice health, and telemedicine. Many feared delays in cancer screening, diagnosis, and treatment. Oncologists noted personal and familial stressors related to COVID-19 exposure fears and loss of social support. Many participants strongly considered working part-time or taking early retirement. Yet, opportunities arose to facilitate personal growth and rise above pandemic adversity, fostering greater resilience. Recommendations for organizational well-being interventions included psychologic or peer support resources, flexible time-off, and ASCO and state oncology societies involvement to develop care guidelines, well-being resources, and mental health advocacy. CONCLUSION: Our study suggests that the COVID-19 pandemic has adversely affected oncologist burnout, fulfillment, practice health, cancer care, and workforce. It illuminates where professional organizations could play a significant role in oncologist well-being.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , Oncologists , Adult , Burnout, Psychological , Female , Humans , Male , Minority Groups , Pandemics , SARS-CoV-2
7.
Am Soc Clin Oncol Educ Book ; 41: e339-e353, 2021 Jun.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1249568

ABSTRACT

Optimizing the well-being of the oncology clinician has never been more important. Well-being is a critical priority for the cancer organization because burnout adversely impacts the quality of care, patient satisfaction, the workforce, and overall practice success. To date, 45% of U.S. ASCO member medical oncologists report experiencing burnout symptoms of emotional exhaustion and depersonalization. As the COVID-19 pandemic remains widespread with periods of outbreaks, recovery, and response with substantial personal and professional consequences for the clinician, it is imperative that the oncologist, team, and organization gain direct access to resources addressing burnout. In response, the Clinician Well-Being Task Force was created to improve the quality, safety, and value of cancer care by enhancing oncology clinician well-being and practice sustainability. Well-being is an integrative concept that characterizes quality of life and encompasses an individual's work- and personal health-related environmental, organizational, and psychosocial factors. These resources can be useful for the cancer organization to develop a well-being blueprint: a detailed start plan with recognized strategies and interventions targeting all oncology stakeholders to support a culture of community in oncology.


Subject(s)
Burnout, Professional/psychology , Medical Oncology/methods , Neoplasms/therapy , Oncologists/psychology , Stress, Psychological/prevention & control , Burnout, Psychological/prevention & control , Burnout, Psychological/psychology , COVID-19/epidemiology , COVID-19/prevention & control , COVID-19/virology , Humans , Internet , Job Satisfaction , Medical Oncology/organization & administration , Neoplasms/diagnosis , Pandemics , SARS-CoV-2/isolation & purification , SARS-CoV-2/physiology , Social Support , United States
8.
J Am Coll Radiol ; 18(8): 1198-1207, 2021 08.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1185030

ABSTRACT

The acute consequences of the COVID-19 pandemic have impacted wellness strategies aimed at mitigating the pre-existing epidemic of burnout in radiology. Specifically, safety measures including social distancing requirements, effective communications, supporting remote and distributed work teams, and newly exposed employment and treatment inequities have challenged many major efforts at fostering professional fulfillment. To get our wellness efforts back on track and to achieve a new and perhaps even a better "normal" will require refocusing and reconsidering ways to foster and build a culture of wellness, implementing practices that improve work efficiencies, and supporting personal health, wellness behaviors, and resilience. Optimizing meaning in work is also critical for well-being and professional fulfillment. In addition to these earlier approaches, organizations and leaders will need to reprioritize efforts to build high-functioning cohesive and connected teams; to train, implement, and manage peer-support practices; and to support posttraumatic growth. This growth represents the positive psychological changes that can occur after highly challenging life circumstances and, when successful, allows individuals to achieve a higher level of functioning by addressing and learning from the precipitating event. Our practices can support this growth through education, emotional regulation, and disclosure, by developing a narrative that reimagines a hoped-for better future and by finding meaning through services that benefit others.


Subject(s)
Burnout, Professional , COVID-19 , Posttraumatic Growth, Psychological , Burnout, Professional/epidemiology , Burnout, Professional/prevention & control , Humans , Pandemics , Radiologists , SARS-CoV-2
9.
JAMA Intern Med ; 181(2): 251-259, 2021 02 01.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1085684

ABSTRACT

Importance: Understanding how the electronic health record (EHR) system changes clinician work, productivity, and well-being is critical. Little is known regarding global variation in patterns of use. Objective: To provide insights into which EHR activities clinicians spend their time doing, the EHR tools they use, the system messages they receive, and the amount of time they spend using the EHR after hours. Design, Setting, and Participants: This cross-sectional study analyzed the deidentified metadata of ambulatory care health systems in the US, Canada, Northern Europe, Western Europe, the Middle East, and Oceania from January 1, 2019, to August 31, 2019. All of these organizations used the EHR software from Epic Systems and represented most of Epic Systems's ambulatory customer base. The sample included all clinicians with scheduled patient appointments, such as physicians and advanced practice practitioners. Exposures: Clinician EHR use was tracked by deidentified and aggregated metadata across a variety of clinical activities. Main Outcomes and Measures: Descriptive statistics for clinician EHR use included time spent on clinical activities, note documentation (as measured by the percentage of characters in the note generated by automated or manual data entry source), messages received, and time spent after hours. Results: A total of 371 health systems were included in the sample, of which 348 (93.8%) were located in the US and 23 (6.2%) were located in other countries. US clinicians spent more time per day actively using the EHR compared with non-US clinicians (mean time, 90.2 minutes vs 59.1 minutes; P < .001). In addition, US clinicians vs non-US clinicians spent significantly more time performing 4 clinical activities: notes (40.7 minutes vs 30.7 minutes; P < .001), orders (19.5 minutes vs 8.75 minutes; P < .001), in-basket messages (12.5 minutes vs 4.80 minutes; P < .001), and clinical review (17.6 minutes vs 14.8 minutes; P = .01). Clinicians in the US composed more automated note text than their non-US counterparts (77.5% vs 60.8% of note text; P < .001) and received statistically significantly more messages per day (33.8 vs 12.8; P < .001). Furthermore, US clinicians used the EHR for a longer time after hours, logging in 26.5 minutes per day vs 19.5 minutes per day for non-US clinicians (P = .01). The median US clinician spent as much time actively using the EHR per day (90.1 minutes) as a non-US clinician in the 99th percentile of active EHR use time per day (90.7 minutes) in the sample. These results persisted after controlling for organizational characteristics, including structure, type, size, and daily patient volume. Conclusions and Relevance: This study found that US clinicians compared with their non-US counterparts spent substantially more time actively using the EHR for a wide range of clinical activities or tasks. This finding suggests that US clinicians have a greater EHR burden that may be associated with nontechnical factors, which policy makers and health system leaders should consider when addressing clinician wellness.


Subject(s)
Electronic Health Records/statistics & numerical data , Physicians , Cross-Sectional Studies , Humans , Internationality , Time Factors , United States
11.
Acad Med ; 96(10): 1389-1392, 2021 10 01.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-998488

ABSTRACT

Health care professionals and the institutions in which they work are being stretched to their limits amidst the current COVID-19 pandemic. At the same time, a second longstanding pandemic has been brought to the fore: the entrenched system of racial injustice and oppression. The first pandemic is new, and to date, substantial resources have been allocated to urgently addressing its mitigation; the second has a long history with inconsistent attention and resources but has recently been spotlighted more intensely than at any time in the nation's recent past. The authors contend that these 2 simultaneous pandemics have brought forth the need for institutions in the United States to make a renewed commitment to respect, wellness, diversity, and inclusion. While investment and leadership in these domains have always been essential, these have largely been viewed as a "nice-to-have" option. The events of much of 2020 (most notably) have illustrated that committing to and investing in policies, programs, centers, and leadership to drive change in these domains are essential and a "need-to-have" measure. The authors outline the necessity of investing in the promotion of cultures of inclusive excellence at both individual and organizational levels to coordinate a united response to the simultaneous pandemics. It is in the interests of health care systems to consider the wellness of the workforce to overcome the longer-term economic, systemic, and social trauma that will likely occur for years to come at both the individual and institutional levels. Maintaining or augmenting investment is necessary despite the economic challenges the nation faces. Now is the time to cultivate resilience and wellness through a renewed commitment to cultures of respect, diversity, and inclusion. This commitment is urgently needed to support and sustain the health care workforce and maintain outstanding health care systems for future generations.


Subject(s)
COVID-19/therapy , Courage , Delivery of Health Care/organization & administration , Health Personnel/psychology , Health Personnel/statistics & numerical data , Organizational Culture , Racism/psychology , Adult , Female , Humans , Male , Middle Aged , Pandemics/prevention & control , SARS-CoV-2 , United States
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