Hospital Burnout – A Howling Stint
Have you come across a situation where you feel that your physician is not keenly listening to what you said, or you have to say? Most of the time he is busy looking at the computer monitor? Well, if this is the case, then you are not the only one! Most of the patient recently have complained or showed dissatisfaction over this behavior pattern. But have you ever thought, what exactly is leading to this pattern of behavior subsequently resulting in lesser face time between patientsand doctor?Yes, the answer is but evident. Electronic revolution, instead aptly called e-revolution, has taken the whole world by a storm in the past two decades. Irrespective of the sector, it has dug its grassrootsas strong as a bull. All the traditional systems have taken an e-makeover to fit intoa contemporary style. Banking, shopping, eating, traveling and all other major sectors have made the radical shift to an evolutionary upgradation. While rapidity at work, the requirement of less labor and quick results are the key factors contributing to its ongoing gaga, there has been a cacophony,on the other hand, that technology has made human beings very mechanical so much so that there is hardly any time for people to exchange looks.
The medical field is the foremost victim of this trend called Digitalisation according to some surveys. The contribution of technology in diagnosis, immunization dates, x-rays, scans, radiology images and research of medicines is exemplary. But certain practices like the implementation of EMRs (Electronic Medical Records) are damaging the one-to-one co- ordination that a doctor and a patient are supposed to have as part of a healthy relationship. EMRs are a digital version of the traditional physical copy of patients’ files. They are the database of the patients that visit a specific place or within a facility like a clinic or a doctor’s office. It contains all the information about a patient’s medical condition and helps doctors in having a quick review of the past and present health condition.
Compared to traditional paper-based records, EMRs have multiple advantages like they let doctors track data over time and identify and treat patients based on tested parameters thus resulting in quality care. But have you noticed that doctors are so involved in reading through the digital prints rather than on direct interaction with patients? Many medical related researchdone on various patients brought out the shocking news that their doctors don’t even pay an ear to the suffering of the patient.
This annoys many patients and often leads to not turning up to the clinic anymore. Doctors have an altogether different story. They opine that excessive pressure is causing them to neglect their private life. They hardly spend time with family and friends. Earlier they did practice during their work hours. Now with the introduction of EMRs, they are supposed to be attentive post their official timings which is making passionate professionals turn out to be exhausted,slaves. The not-so-tech-savvy older generation is having a tough time coping up with the superior technical advancements in the medical field and are starting to hate their work. Because of this, there has been an increasing trend in depression among Doctors,andthere are also reports stating an increase in suicide rate among physicians due to burnouts and stress after the implementation of EMRs.
While EMRs make a Doctor’s job easy, helping them to go through patients’ history, their accessibility at the availability of the internet is forcing doctors to run through the records at odd times. This grabs away their private time leaving less or no chance to de-stress themselves. The surrounding apathy also is resulting in unproductive work which ultimately leads them to frustration.
“It is numbers that count everywhere.” cries a grueling medical practitioner. The employers in many hospitals want their Doctors to treat as many patients as possible in a day in order to increase their profitability. This gives no time to doctors either to go through the detailed reports of patients or to listen to them. Ultimately, resulting in job dissatisfaction. Some surveys have shown that due to this burnout, many doctors have chosen to give up their profession- a sign of enormous embarrassment.
The surveys also stated that many doctors have complained about over-duty that led them to severe distress. Their employers often wanted to see more than the prescribed number of patients per day. Apart from these, there would be calls from nurses and caretakers requesting to see in-patients. By this time, many would often be late to discharge regular activities. All these resultsin some doctors leave the corporate setup and go with self- practice. They say that it was a lot satisfying and that they were able to spend half an hour to 45 minutes with their patients according to need rather than just write down a prescription. They sometimes spendmore than the right amount of time with attention seekers like elderly patients. “They require more of love and warmth rather than just write medicines which we cannot offer in huge rushes.“
It is a disgusting fact to know that a lot of qualified doctors are actually leaving their workplaces and contributing to the growing scarcity of doctors. As proper medical care is being sought by disease-prone population, there is an urge to retrieve the on-going scenario and debunk the surveys. This highly rated profession which is given due respect as life savior is in considerable asperity.
Burn out can be defined in several ways. It is basically the eroding mental ability because of lack of interest, stability,and dignity at work. It results in emotional exhaustion that can lead to depression. This may completely devoid doctors of enthusiasm at work and compassion for patients. This might even affect nurses and other caretakers resulting in poor quality of medical care.
A well-versed doctor is known to build a nation,and if situations go vice-versa, it can be a complete generation failure.