As an ER doctor, COVID has taught me that I don't matter.  So I stopped

As an ER doctor, COVID has taught me that I don’t matter. So I stopped

After nearly 20 years as an emergency physician, I left the profession I once loved. I’m not the only one.

According to a new report from data analytics firm Definitive Healthcare, 117,000 doctors left medicine in 2021. Each departure costs the healthcare system about $500,000 to find a replacement – $58 billion last year alone – and the ripple effect has already resulted in worsening medical care for all of us.

This mass exodus of dedicated professionals is the canary in the coal mine of a growing health care crisis and despite what hospital administrators have proposed, the solution does not involve more resilience training for the canaries. remaining.

It’s time to fix the mine.

As doctors, our indoctrination begins in medical school with an unspoken rule: the only way to be a truly good doctor is to put our patients’ needs before our own at all costs. For example, early in my career, when I was eight months pregnant, I contracted H1N1 at the hospital where I worked. Despite a fever of 102 degrees, I never called in sick. Years later, when my mammogram looked suspicious for breast cancer, I created a schedule that allowed me to work shifts in the ER after each radiation treatment. Fortunately, the biopsy was benign.

Every doctor has similar stories – from shoving their IV pole into patient rooms while working on a gastrointestinal bug to admitting themselves to hospital at the end of a shift after their appendix ruptured hours earlier. It’s normal for us. We continue because what we do matters. But increasingly, many of us are asking, do we matter?

The pandemic and its continued aftermath has accelerated a growing sense of disillusionment that the answer is actually no — at least not to leadership.

#doctor #COVID #taught #dont #matter #stopped

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *