March 16, 2011 - This year’s CompHealth Symposium featured a seminar on the value of physician on-boarding, presented by Iris Grimm. Ms. Grimm is the creator of the Balanced Physician Programs, a unique program designed to support physicians in becoming more effective leaders for their patients, staff, family, and community.
Physicians perform best when they are able to strike a balance of their clinical, interpersonal and communication skills in unison. Unfortunately, the reality is that an alarming percentage of physicians juggle an unhealthy mix of stress and lack of self-care. They find the practice of medicine is stressful and this stress is directly linked to poorer physical and mental health.
- 60-70% of physicians, including 40% of surgeons, experience burnout at one point in their career
- Burnout is caused by a host of factors such as emotional exhaustion, depersonalization and decreased sense of self-efficacy
- 78% of physicians think medicine is either no longer or less rewarding
- Nearly half of primary care physicians will reduce their number of patients over next three years
- Increased work hours and nights on call are associated with decreased job satisfaction
- More than 70% view personal time as very important to their well-being
- Two out of three young physicians are not interested in working longer hours for better pay - many are opting for part-time hours instead to help achieve a more satisfying work-life balance
A good on-boarding process can help eliminate physician burnout as well as address the needs of today’s medical professionals. The on-boarding process can significantly improve physician retention and performance, especially when done in a comprehensive manner that begins as early as the first contact with a potential new hire and continues long after the traditional orientation program ends.
There are understandable challenges to making an on-boarding process work across the board when you consider some of the mainstay traits associated with physicians - denial in dealing with issues, ego preventing the “ask” for help, stigma of being a burned out doctor, etc.
Options for an effective on-boarding process include:
- A coaching or mentor program
- CME programs that focus on physician well-being and interpersonal skills
The goal is to create a balanced physician—one who can achieve that well-rounded mix of clinical skills, self-management skills and interpersonal competencies. In finding that balance, physicians experience a greater professional effectiveness where they have growing satisfaction with their work and the ability to develop a vision for their career and life. Medical groups benefit, as physicians are able to shape out successful careers where they build trusting relationships with staff and patients, seek out leadership roles within the practice and help make the practice profitable.
The outcomes and benefits of an effective on-boarding program for a medical group far exceed the time, energy and resources required to implement one. Developing well-balanced physicians leads to increased patient satisfaction and retention, increased healthcare employee satisfaction and reduced turnover, and reduced malpractice premiums, among others.
You know the old adage: An ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure. It’s a motto that’s been uttered from physicians to their patients for years. Now is the time employers should foster environments that enable physicians to heed their own advice.
CompHealth's Symposium consistently brings together some of the best speakers and presenters in the country. The annual event hosted by CompHealth was held in Salt Lake City in February and provided the healthcare industry with an opportunity to learn, network and share knowledge.
Founded in 1979, CompHealth is the nation’s leading provider of temporary and permanent physician staffing, as well as a leading provider of temporary and permanent allied health staffing. CompHealth prides itself on having the best people to help provide the best healthcare and is also a proud member of the CHG Healthcare Services family of companies, currently ranked No. 27 on FORTUNE magazine’s list of “100 Best Companies to Work For.” To learn more about this award-winning company and its service offerings, visit www.comphealth.com, follow us on Twitter: @comphealth, or “like us” on Facebook.