Find-A-Code Focus Newsletter

Burnout and Emergency Medicine

By Chris Woolstenhulme, CMRS
November 30, 2015

When it comes to Burnout, Emergency Medicine is hit the Hardest according to MedPage Today. The results come from a survey of burnout among U.S. Physicians. The mean average on those reporting burnout was 45.8%. The emergency physicians were certainly reporting higher burnout at more than 60%. There are many factors contributing to the emergency physician’s burnout, such as the intense environment, economic pressures from healthcare, as well as Medicare's quality indicators, which make doctors accountable for things they have no control over.

One important aspect to note is Medicare's goals to save money on hospital admissions, ER docs are put in a very bad position, and it is not their choice. MEDPAGE Today explains, when a patient presents with atrial fibrillation, he or she has to be hospitalized. But Medicare will no longer pay for that admission, saying the patient should be placed in observation status instead. Observation status means the patient is responsible for the hospital bill.

"Emergency physicians are a little more aware of burnout because of the intensity of their work," said Shay Bintliff, MD, 80, who recently stopped working after 30 years as an ER doctor. "Work environments that are high demand and low control are most likely to lead to burnout. ER docs work for somebody else. They work for a group, a hospital, or a corporation. They don't have a single individual practice where they call the shots. They are pretty much at somebody else's mercy."

Burnout has not gone un-noticed, for example the AMA wants to help reignite your purpose and revitalize your practice and improve patient care.  The AMA has spent "well into the eight figures" on all phased of its practice rejuvenation program that includes STEPS forward, offering a web-based program free to any doctor or member of the public at  http://www.stepsforward.org.

To read the entire article MEDPAGE TODAY


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