Fighting Physician Burnout: The Countdown Initiative
By Christopher Hughey
Reading time: 3 minutes
According to the latest annual Physician Well-Being Report, doctors are
5x more likely than others to experience burnout
4x more likely to experience extreme fatigue
3x more likely to have a poorer overall quality of life
2x more likely to experience suicidal ideation, leaving us with just
1 conclusion: It’s time to fight back and put an end to Physician Burnout!
That’s why Fast Layne Solutions has teamed up with our partners at 1st Call Triage and Evolve Medical Consulting to launch the Countdown Initiative, a movement to fight physician burnout using every tool at our disposal.
To fight a problem, you must first understand the problem. As companies working with doctors to solve their biggest problems, as a group we have a unique collective experience and insight into these issues.
Here are the highlights:
- Frustration at loss of autonomy and independence. Too many doctors feel like cogs in a very large machine over which they have no control.
- Dissatisfaction with information systems like EHRs that require so much clicking and typing that doctors are constantly playing catch-up, working nights and weekends just to feed these beasts that add little to no value to their patients.
- Stress from managing staff who are themselves overworked and overwhelmed with a constant onslaught of manually executed tasks such as medication prior authorizations, eligibility checks, reminders, follow-ups, and patient communication and incoming phone calls.
- Lack of connection with patients, most often caused by many of the issues above.
- Feeling that they are not getting through to patients, most of whom do not adhere sufficiently to treatment and medication plans, often because they don’t fully understand them. (And who has time anymore to sit down with them and make sure they do when the doctors are clicking and typing and fighting insurance companies all day long?! See how all these problems interrelate?)
- Lack of innovation in healthcare delivery. This is more perception than reality. With tools like digital transformation, diagnostic artificial intelligence, remote patient monitoring, doctor-driven advance care plan delivery, patient advocacy designed to reduce time-to-diagnosis, blockchain-based credentialing, and outsourced call triage, there is plenty of innovation happening in healthcare today. But who has time to act on any of it with all these other challenges?
- Too many intermediaries. Another reason doctors feel disconnected from patients is because there are so many intrusive intermediaries involved in the doctor/patient relationship these days. Be they insurance companies, pharmacy benefit managers, CMS, or any of the other endless line of people micro-managing the doctor/patient relationship, there are simply too many people coming between the physician and the patient. And who gets blamed? Those intermediaries? No. The doctors themselves. Which is why trust in doctors is at an all-time low, even as those doctors are working harder than ever for their patients.
It’s time for a fresh start. It’s time to defeat physician burnout.
Christopher Hughey is the founder and CEO of Fast Layne Solutions.