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Dr Mark Friedberg Recognizes the Importance of Addressing Underlying Causes of Burnout
April 19, 2018

Dr Mark Friedberg Recognizes the Importance of Addressing Underlying Causes of Burnout

"If clinicians are burning out, it is unlikely that participation in new payment models will be sustainable," explained Mark Friedberg, MD, MPP, senior natural scientist and director of the Boston office at RAND Corporation.


"If clinicians are burning out, it is unlikely that participation in new payment models will be sustainable," explained Mark Friedberg, MD, MPP, senior natural scientist and director of the Boston office at RAND Corporation.

Transcript

If the clinician burnout issue isn’t addressed, could it affect how successful new payment models are?

Yes, there are two ways in which clinician burnout matters. The first is just on its own, intrinsically. If clinicians are burning out, it is unlikely that participation in new payment models will be sustainable. The reason for that is that people are gonna leave the practice. We do see as part of the things in our Health Affairs article, that people were saying over time they were more likely to leave the practice. And there is evidence that that is likely to be true. People tend to, in other surveys, not this particular study, follow through on what they say.

The other thing though is that the underlying cause for the burnout has to be addressed. So, not every cause of burnout is an equal source of concern in alternative payment models but some really are. So for example, if you have clinicians who are burning out because they are being pulled into too many different directions or because they don’t have enough time to see the patients that they need to see, identifying those causes and trying to rectify them somehow is pretty important intrinsically to the organization and it’s probably going to affect performance in all kinds of ways and then it will also hopefully get the staff to a better place in terms of professional satisfaction so hopefully they’ll stay around.

 
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