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“Preventing Physician Burnout: Curing the Chaos and Returning Joy to the Practice of Medicine"

March 10, 2017


By Paul DeChant, MD, MBA, Senior Advisor

The crisis of physician burnout impacts virtually every healthcare organization in the nation. Studies show that more than 50 percent of physicians report at least one symptom of burnout — a percentage that has grown significantly in recent years. In fact, last month I attended HIMSS17 along with over 40,000 other professionals dedicated to improving informatics in healthcare, and presented on the topic of Physician Burnout at the IBM Theater. As burnout becomes a more prevalent issue, physicians and executive leaders, as well as the patients their organizations serve, need a solution, and fast.

In order to produce a valuable solution, you must first understand the problem. To fully comprehend the cause and effect of the burnout epidemic, I joined forces with Dr. Diane Shannon, and together we spent over a year researching and interviewing over 50 experts in health care, Lean, and burnout, many of whom are actively engaged in leading organizations or supporting physicians experiencing burnout. We compiled the research and findings to identify how health care organizations can reduce the risk and prevent burnout in our latest book, Preventing Physician Burnout: Curing the Chaos and Returning Joy to the Practice of Medicine, A Handbook for Physicians and Health Care Leaders.

In Preventing Physician Burnout: Curing the Chaos and Returning Joy to the Practice of Medicine, we explore the premise that physician burnout stems directly from the healthcare work environment — one steeped in chaos from factors like regulations, electronic health records, and demographic trends, and where the path to success lies in heroic workarounds.

Readers will learn the critical steps to understanding and identifying the drivers of a toxic environment, and how leading in a different way, based on the Lean principle of Respect for People, can be effectively used to move healthcare from a place of motivation-destroying dysfunction to one of high performance and satisfied physicians.

Healthcare executives and physicians alike will learn specific actions they can take to remedy what ails their organizations — with an emphasis on positive leadership, cultural change, and an effective, ongoing Lean management system that is key to preventing physician burnout.

Preventing Physician Burnout: Curing the Chaos and Returning Joy to the Practice of Medicine, is currently available for purchase on Amazon.

To watch a short video on the book, click here.

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