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The Plight of Physician Burnout

Burnout | Editors Note | Insights Care

Although, burnout can affect professionals in any space, it has hit the care industry the most. It is the phenomenon of physical, mental, and emotional exhaustion, which is caused by prolonged and extensive stress. It brings with it the lack of sense of completing personal ambitions, depersonalization, and many such problems. In healthcare, the physicians are under trmendous pressures of time and work, undetermined working hours, ethical burdens and responsility of their patients’ lives, and high emotional and mental intensity. This places them under a very high risk of burnout.

What have been the reasons of this? Dissatisfaction is one of the major problems that lead to physician burnout. If, how their time and energy is used dissatisfies the doctors, it leads to mental stress and self-doubt. Moreover, the patients whose conditions cannot be treated, are viewed as their personal failures sometimes. Patient management has never been easy. Other then this, there are always the external factors like long working hours, pressure, moral obligations, etc. But the most persistent complaint recorded is the stress of administrative tasks and the overwhelming regulations. These are the tasks the doctors are not taught to do and they are pretty much exhausting.

Despite the wide-spread awareness about this issue, there is negligible progress and numerous physicians are facing stress, depression, physical exhaustion, and many more. Many of the doctors have reported that they have thought about suicide, someday in their life. This ailment of burnout is witnessed more in female physicians than their male counterparts. To help treat this issue, many have started arranging inspirational seminars, talks of resilience, meditation camps, yoga, and whatever they think may help. But, these solutions are not aiding enough.

So, what can be done to help erradicate it from the root? Let’s look at some probable solutions. One of the solutions can be to teach the students pursuing medical education about stress management, patient handling, and many such topics right from the initial levels. The physicians should be aware about the problem of burnout and should be pushed to see a therapist or talk it out, if they have any thoughts that point to the syndrome. Today, even when they realise the problem, very less number of doctors consult a professional for treatment. The clerical and administrative loads, that they have to attend to, can be minimized with right set of individuals in their place and few government regulations. An incredible help in this can be the conversational AI, that can not only help improve doctor-patient relationships, but reduce a lot of emotional stress for the physicians.

Physical burnout is one of the major problems faced by the healthcare industry. With so less practising doctors for such large population, the pressure on the existing ones keeps on rising. It is the need of the hour to find solutions that can help treat this syndrome effectively.



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