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00:00:01
>> Working grueling hours and facing down high pressure conditions have long been badges of honor among American doctors in a system seemingly built to test their limits. But now those same pressures are dding up to more medical professionals burning out, and battling emotional exhaustion, cynicism, and decreased effectiveness.
00:00:20
Now some US hospitals and insurers are starting to recognize their role in the crisis and are taking action. Reuters' reporter Julie Steenhuysen visited Michigan's St. Joseph Mercy Hospital.>> Burnout has become a nationwide problem. About one in every two doctors in the country experience it. Here at St. Joe's, a lot of the doctors do a variety of things to take care of themselves including organic gardening, or taking part in an exercise class in the middle of the day.
00:00:48
>> Vascular surgeon Dr. Brian Halloran says in this garden he's found much needed breathing room.>> To me gardening is the form of my therapy. I do suffer from some of the same elements that many of my colleagues in terms of our work, and burnouts, and the need to find releases, and-
00:01:09
>> 50% of the doctors at St. Joseph Mercy showed signs of burnout in a survey last year. A score that's on part with the national average and is rising. The work overload is fueled by growing clerical demands. Many primary care physicians now spend over a half of their 11-hour day performing data entry tasks.
00:01:27
And they often finish their work at home, which has a negative impact on their work-life balance. A 2015 Mayo Clinic study found that more than 7% of doctors had considered suicide in the past 12 months compared with 4% of other workers. And an estimated 300 to 400 doctors a year do go through with it.
00:01:47
Beyond the emotional toll, burnout is also bad for business, eroding patient satisfaction and quality scores. If a patient is harmed by burnout-related medical errors, hospitals have to bear the legal expense of defending their doctors. And when a physician quits, that can cause hospitals over $1 million in recruitment, training, and productivity costs.