Do you know we have record rates of physician burnout, dissatisfaction, and suicide? Ongoing shortages in primary care, without improvement in sight? Physicians exiting medicine earlier  than in the past? What about burnout? Do you know it affects patients as well as their doctors? Affects physicians' families and friends? Increases mistakes and malpractice risk? Affects patient adherence and outcomes? Is costly to the entire system? How do we start to fix this? ...

Read more...

Dear parents, Congratulations on your daughter’s acceptance into medical school.  Like the first day of kindergarten, this launch is notable for parents as well as children. You may have some concerns about the stresses she will face. Having been there, I can tell you there will be many.  Not to worry, though. Times are changing.  You daughter is free to learn among the brightest of the bright while avoiding problems women before ...

Read more...

They played Taps at my dad’s funeral. Two teenagers on trumpets. First, the girl, positioned to the back and left of the crowd. Ta-ta-dah, she starts boldly, without the unease of her youth. Each simple note pierces the dry winter air. Yes, you have our attention. Not another sound. Not even a breath by gathered friends and family. In time, the second musician’s reply from the front. Ta-da-dah. And a pause. Their ...

Read more...

“I solemnly pledge to consecrate my life to the service of humanity.”  Standing with my medical school colleagues, we continue: “I will respect and hold the secrets that are confided in me. I will exercise moral integrity.” I easily agree. But then, “The health of my patient will be my first consideration.”  I’m 40 weeks pregnant, with swollen feet and raging heartburn. My baby kicks wildly. With certainty, I know that ...

Read more...

I thought about the rather corny starfish story when I was driving home after clinic today. You know the one. It goes something like this:

A man was walking along a deserted beach at sunset. As he walked, he could see a young boy in the distance. As he drew nearer, he noticed that the boy kept bending down, picking something up and throwing it into the water. Time and again ...

Read more...

1. Quit taking care of yourself. There is no upper limit to the needs of patients. There is always more medicine to learn and do. Add to this the needs of children, aging parents and a partner -- your time for yourself quickly becomes zero. Want to get burned out quickly? Quit exercising. Eat on the run. Have disrupted sleep. Don’t set professional boundaries. Miss enough first steps, parent’s medical ...

Read more...

Dear doctor, I need you to be healthy. When I come to you for help, I need your "A" game. I need you sleep enough. Eat healthy food. Not too much. Mostly vegetables. I need you to exercise regularly and take time to take care of your own physical, emotional and spiritual needs. I need to you use the bathroom when you need to. I need you to stop and take ...

Read more...

1 Pages

Most Popular

Join 150,000+ subscribers

Get the best of KevinMD in your inbox

Sign me up! It's free. 
close-link
✓ Join 150,000+ subscribers 
✓ Get KevinMD's 5 most popular stories
Subscribe. It's free.