Making Money Off of Physician Burnout

sept_19_ihe_physician_burnout_panel

I just hate it when companies try to exploit something that is trending.  I hate it even more when it is about something I am so familiar with like physician burnout.  This was recently emailed to me (their big webcast link is here):

Report: Physician Burnout on the Rise, Healthcare Leaders Design Roadmap to Restore Joy in Medicine

Authors of report to present recommendations during September 19 webinar
SAN JOSE, Calif., Sept. 15, 2016 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) — Vocera Communications, Inc. (NYSE:VCRA) announced today that innovative solutions are within reach to reverse the climbing rates of physician burnout in America, thanks to research by a think tank of leading physicians, including the company’s Chief Medical Officer Bridget Duffy, MD. The findings are detailed in a new report: “Physician Burnout in America: A Roadmap for Restoring Joy and Purpose to Medicine,” which will be featured in an upcoming webcast on Monday, Sept. 19. Register for the complimentary webcast here.

Among the conveners of this discussion and architects of the report are Dr. Duffy; William J. Maples, MD, Chief Medical Officer of Professional Research Consultants, Inc. and Executive Director of the Institute for Healthcare Excellence; Ronald Paulus, MD, President and CEO of Mission Health; and Tom Cosgrove, Founder of QPatient Insight. These thought leaders converged at The Johnson Foundation Wingspread Center with other industry pioneers in late 2015 to design a roadmap and change the physician burnout paradigm.

“Burnout is a serious problem that negatively impacts physicians as well as patients, families and the entire care team,” Dr. Paulus said. “To identify root cause and design a roadmap for change, we explored the factors contributing to physician burnout at the macro, micro and individual levels. The report outlines a path that begins our journey to restore humanity, joy and resiliency to the practice of medicine. We have made this a top strategic priority at Mission Health.”

The report also cites some startling industry statistics, including the fact that physicians are more likely than the general population to commit suicide. Most physicians experience burnout, and 73 percent would not recommend the profession to their children. At the same time that baby boomers are becoming seniors at the rate of 10,000 per day, the physician workforce is decreasing. Some 30 percent of primary care physicians aged 35-49 expect to leave the medical field, and a shortage of 25,000 surgeons is expected by 2025.

“Physician burnout is often reported and talked about,” Dr. Maples said. “However, until now, real solutions for addressing burnout have proven to be elusive—in part because physicians themselves haven’t been involved in developing or implementing them.”

This important discussion leading to the report included rural, suburban, urban and military health system leaders, primary- and specialty-care providers, and medical education leaders. There were also frontline caregivers, hospital and health system executives, resiliency and neurology experts and healthcare technology entrepreneurs, who all gathered to develop a deeper understanding of this significant problem and collaborate on innovative ways to address it.

After the think tank collaboration, participants embarked on an intensive research effort and in-depth analysis of the findings. The resulting report focuses on the five key areas they identified to reverse physician burnout, and action steps to do so:

Restore human connections in healthcare with better communication
Redesign medical training with a curriculum focused on physician-patient relationships
Engage patients as partners in care and include them in innovation design
Optimize technology to enhance the patient, physician and care team experience
Reform healthcare policy and processes in ways that truly support physicians and patients
Within these five areas, the report’s authors offer 16 compelling ideas for enacting sweeping change. They include recommendations such as leveraging technology to support, rather than impede, physician-patient interaction; engaging insurance companies in reducing administrative red tape; and deploying care models that make patients a full partner in their care.

“We must address physician burnout, and we must do it now. It is essential to improving the healthcare experience for all of us – physicians, nurses, patients and families,” said Dr. Duffy, who also leads the Vocera Experience Innovation Network, an international group of thought leaders focused on discovering technologies and solutions that meet the Quadruple Aim of improving population health, elevating patient-centered care, and reducing costs while restoring joy back to the practice of medicine. “Bold leadership is needed to drive an industry-wide cultural transformation and mentor the next generation of physicians so they will embrace these values.”

Later this year, additional healthcare leaders will address nurse burnout in America, a nationwide conversation Vocera will join, and one in which the company’s Chief Nursing Officer Rhonda Collins, MSN, RN, will participate.

 

Now let’s tease out the bullshit:

  1. innovative solutions are within reach to reverse the climbing rates of physician burnout
  2. Think tank of leading physicians
  3. To identify root cause and design a roadmap for change, we explored the factors contributing to physician burnout at the macro, micro and individual levels
  4. The resulting report focuses on the five key areas they identified to reverse physician burnout, and action steps to do so:Restore human connections in healthcare with better communication
    Redesign medical training with a curriculum focused on physician-patient relationships
    Engage patients as partners in care and include them in innovation design
    Optimize technology to enhance the patient, physician and care team experience
    Reform healthcare policy and processes in ways that truly support physicians and patients
  5. Within these five areas, the report’s authors offer 16 compelling ideas for enacting sweeping change. They include recommendations such as leveraging technology to support, rather than impede, physician-patient interaction; engaging insurance companies in reducing administrative red tape; and deploying care models that make patients a full partner in their care.

So, as you can see, they have literally got NONE of it right.  It’s hysterical.  Here are just some of the things they missed that need to be done:

  • Remove the insurers
  • Remove the administrators
  • Remove unproven quality metrics
  • Remove the lawyers
  • Severely cut back on EMR work
  • Increase the amount of time with patients

Please don’t pay for this kind of webcasting crap. Instead, leave some recommendations in the comments and maybe they can learn from you: the actual physicians who are in the trenches.

 

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