Check this out. What you will see is the sign up for a lecture on the topic of “physician wellbeing” given by the University of Pennsylvania psychiatrist pictured above. As a long-time student of physician burnout and suicide, I find it gratifying to see the words “physician wellbeing” used together.  

This piece starts out with an important quotation:

“Physicians came into the COVID-19 pandemic on the heels of an epidemic of burnout and discontent.”

Amen. And as the 10 conversations I have been having every month with physicians for my On Doctors’ MindsSM project have convinced me, the pandemic has made the preexisting problems worse by an order of magnitude. Uncertainty. Health Risk. Stress. Change. All of these have been the story of physician life through 2020 and into 2021.  

BUT. As this presentation points out, there are actually interventions that can be employed to restore and to protect physician wellbeing.  

Bottom Line. Clearly this obscure little Grand Rounds lecture is not going to solve the current crisis in physician wellbeing. A lot more muscle has to be put to the accomplishing of this goal. Or even making a dent in the problem

But what can we do? I’m guessing that rather than beating doctors about the head with “reminder details,” we in the pharmaceutical industry might do a lot more to enhance our relationships with physicians, and to foster their loyalty, if we put our considerable resources to work building up physician wellbeing rather than actually being potential contributors to its degradation!

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