The funny thing about this blog is that we have touched on so many issues that the same ones and the same people keep coming again and again. This is what Dr. Conrad wrote back last January:
Christine Sinsky, MD coauthored a 2015 Mayo study that found: physician burnout had risen 15% since 2011, to 54%. There was also a corresponding decline in reported satisfaction with work-life balance. Dr. Sinsky recognizes that this burnout rate is the result of increasing time spent documenting, EHR’s, and loss of control “to government regulators and third party payers.” And now for the fun part.
Sinsky says, “It’s a cumulative effect of well-intended efforts adding up to a burden of work that no one anticipated.” Well-intended by whom, exactly, the sellouts at the AMA? And why is any credit given for good intentions, when those of us on the receiving end of this garbage absolutely anticipated the results? In what sounds like a parody from the old Placebo Journal, “the AMA has created a series of online tutorials – which Sinsky calls “transformation toolkits”—designed to help practices operate more efficiently and enable physicians to gain more control over their workday. Many of the tutorials focus on ways doctors and practices can save time, such as renewing all of a patient’s medications once a year, or spreading documentation and data entry among members of a care team.” She suggests straight-faced that doctors “reengineer” their days to “create a lot more room in their day for enjoyment.”
Yeah, I laughed at this stuff too. That’s when I tried to find out who Christine Sinsky MD was. Here is what I said:
So, who is Christine Sinsky? It turns out that she is a member of the Board of Trustees of the ABIM Foundation and a director of the American Board of Internal Medicine. This is the same organizations found to be corrupt by Wes Fisher MD. Interesting. How is it that someone can be so high up in the the AMA, the ABIM and the ABIM Foundation? Is this one, big, good old “boys and girls” club? What am I missing here?
Yup. She has made a ton of money off our backs (with things like the MOC) but now she wants to help us? The newest joke of an attempt comes in Medical Economics’ article Fighting Burnout at Three Levels. In the piece, Sinsky states that physicians “highly resilient” as a group and emphasizes, “If this group is struggling, the environment must be particularly problematic.” Yeah, and YOU HELPED CREATE THIS ENVIRONMENT!!
Here are more of her delusional thoughts:
- She believes that most primary care practices can save three to five hours of patient care every day by reengineering the way work is done.
- For larger medical systems, she recommends their newest module, called the Organizational Foundation for Joy in Medicine, which makes plain that what’s good for physicians is good for the bottom line, as well: “A more engaged, satisfied workforce will provide better, safer, more compassionate care to patients, which will, in turn, reduce the total costs of care,” the module notes.
- “This is a solvable problem. I wouldn’t be devoting my work life to this topic if I felt it was futile.” She believes that by pairing solid data that asks the question “Is this a wise use of the societal investment in the training of physicians?” with resources, tools and innovations like those at the AMA and others cropping up because “the medical community is at the breaking point,” will help advance the conversation.
Dr. Sinsky, you go ahead and keep devoting your work life to this topic. You say that only 20% of your weekly hours are devoted to patient care so go ahead and sit at your desk or go to meetings for the other 80% trying to rack your brains for the solution. You won’t find one unless you take my advice and take the government and the insurers out of the equation. Boop. It’s solved. Until then you will continue to litter these throwaway magazines with your incredibly stupid ideas that continuously fail. But I bet you don’t care because it keeps you in the position of AMA’s Vice President of Professional Satisfaction and your paycheck will be just fine. How much? Well, it turns out it is impossible to figure out. See Dr. Wes’s newest blog.
This whole thing (and Dr. Sinsky) stinks.