These were the inspiring words of Sandeep Kishore, MD at NAM Action Collaborative on Clinician Well-Being and Resilience. Gerri Donohue, an Advisory Board member of Physician Litigation Stress, attended this conference on May 2, 2018. She walked away with words that represent a renewed spirit in the community; a push to provide awareness, support, and resources for clinicians dealing with burnout or feelings of isolation.
With physician burnout at epidemic proportions, the National Academy of Medicine has made combatting burnout a national priority. More than 50 percent of U.S. physicians report significant symptoms of burnout. This can include emotional exhaustion, fatigue, low energy, depersonalization, substance abuse, depression, and at the extreme end of the spectrum, suicide. Four hundred physicians die by suicide annually, twice that of the general population. No one is immune to the devastating effects of burnout. However, leading experts from the medical community throughout the country came together in this initiative to work toward restoring and enhancing physician well-being.
To quote the National Academy of Medicine “sustained change requires diverse, collective action and the experiences and voices of many.” To that end, the heartfelt pain of emotional exhaustion took the form of art, with magnificent creations displayed, expressing emotion when words do not suffice.
The National Academy of Medicine hosts a collection of resources for clinician well-being known as the Clinician Well-Being Knowledge Hub. They also have an innovative section called Expressions of Clinical Well Being that showcases insights from clinicians, patients, loved ones and organizations working to prevent burnout and promote the well-being.