Sadly, it’s no longer shocking to hear news stories about physicians suffering from extreme stress and its impact on patient safety. Very worryingly, it has now become the new normal in healthcare.
But why is there so much stress amongst physicians? Surely the profession should know more about stress than any other. Let’s shine some light on the growing problem.
Recent new research by the Medical Council highlights excessive working hours and heavy workloads for physicians during the COVID-19 pandemic. This is having a “significant impact on patient safety” according to Dr Gabrielle Colleran, a consultant pediatric radiologist. Please read this article in the Irish Independent to learn more.
In the UK, the high intensity of a physician’s workload has led to wide-spread professional burn out. A 2019 publication in the British Journal of General Physicians, involving a survey of 232 practicing GPs, showed 93.8% were likely to be suffering from a minor psychiatric disorder and 94.7% suffering from at least some form of exhaustion or disengagement .
Now is the time to address this significant problem in healthcare. We cannot let it continue to be the new normal.