The Most Overlooked Health Crisis: Doctor Burnout


Upon hearing of a “nationwide epidemic,” an individual would likely think of a disease, drug, or virus. However, the newest crisis in the health field is physician burnout. Several major medical centers in the United States as well as the American Medical Association all agreed that if the population demands high quality doctors and affordable care, this crisis MUST be recognized. The medical centers involved are extremely reputable, and include: Mayo Clinic, Johns Hopkins, Massachusetts General Hospital, Brigham & Women’s Hospitals, and more.

Health Affairs journal presented the burnout issue first, and states that it characterized by “emotional exhaustion, cynicism, diminishing feelings of accomplishment and “a tendency to view people as objects rather than as human beings.” This general burnout feeling is caused by workplace stress, and the study that they completed in order to find this data involved seven thousand doctors in the United States. In this study, Mayo Clinic president Dr. John Noseworthy stated that over half of all the doctors experienced the burnout symptoms, and also mentioned that electronic health records are a key component to this feeling. While electronic health records are meant to be helpful and efficient, they are time-consuming to use and also disrupt patient interactions.

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