Florida Medical Association

Florida Medical Magazine Spring 2018

Magazine of the Florida Medical Association

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19 www.FLmedical.org FLORIDA MEDICAL MAGAZINE | SPRING 2018 "Burnout is the problem. e system is the cause. We are the answer." — Clif Knight, M.D., Senior VP of Education, American Academy of Family Physicians e corporatization of healthcare is stripping both "health" and "care" out of healthcare. Physicians feel like cogs in a wheel: devalued, unsupported and disempowered. Despite their expertise, physicians are o en overlooked in decision-making, and expected to sink or swim with inadequate support for the life-and-death tasks at hand. ey are also being shoved to the side, along with their patients, both suddenly second to demands from non-clinical administrators, insurance companies, the pharmaceutical industry, the government and other intruders. Our new reality is chilling: e sacred exam room has been invaded and remains under attack. It is increasingly acknowledged that physician wellness goes far beyond self-care. 1 Yet, many approaches to reversing "burnout" still place the burden on physicians while ignoring the unsupportive, toxic environments at the core of this crisis. Experienced healthcare leaders now understand that mounting clerical and regulatory burdens and the way medicine is practiced are at the heart of physician exhaustion and discon- tent. Administrators are paying attention, as studies con rm that all of these factors hurt physicians, patients and a hospital's bottom line. " is really isn't just about exercise and getting enough sleep and having a life outside the hospital," Tait Shanafelt, M.D., Stanford Medicine's rst Chief Physician Wellness O cer, told Reuters. "It has at least as much or more to do with the environment in which these folks are practicing." 2 Healthcare organizations have a responsibility to nurture healthy, supportive and empowering cultures so physicians can function at their highest potential. If they fail at this founda- tional task, the entire operation is vulnerable, along with every health professional and patient. Beyond 'Self-Care' It's time to hold healthcare organizations accountable for physician wellness. By Amaryllis Sánchez Wohlever, M.D. continued on page 20

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