Objective: To evaluate the relationship between burnout, satisfaction with electronic health records and work-life integration, and the career plans of US physicians.
Nearly 1 in 5 US physicians intend to reduce clinical work hours in the next year, and roughly 1 in 50 intend to leave medicine altogether in the next 2 years to pursue a different career. If physicians follow through on these intentions, it could profoundly worsen the projected shortage of US physicians.
When you dig into their data analysis, it's no surprise that they found the following:
Notably, after adjusting for other personal and professional characteristics, physicians who were burned out, dissatisfied with work-life integration, and dissatisfied with the EHR were more likely to intend to reduce clinical work in the next 12 months and were more likely to intend to leave their current position in the next 24 months.
Burnout was even more strongly related to whether physicians intended to leave medicine altogether to pursue a different career.
These results were based on surveys performed between August 28, 2014, and October 6, 2014. It would be very interesting and insightful to repeat this study in 2017-2018 and see how these numbers have changed. What are hospitals, health systems, and group practices doing to address concerns about burnout, work-life integration, and EHR dissatisfaction?