Our February meeting of Health TechNet was held on Friday, February 22 from noon to 2 pm at Nelson Mullins’ offices in Washington, D.C.
Our featured topic was the troubling trends of physician burnout, depression and suicide, and the extent to which the demands of new technology are a factor. We had several experts present who identified solutions and strategies for addressing this pressing problem. In a recent survey sponsored by Medscape of 15,543 physicians, 42% of all surveyed physicians reported some degree of burnout, affecting employed and self-employed respondents equally. A systematic literature review of physician suicide shows that the suicide rate among physicians is 28 to 40 per 100,000, more than double that in the general population (source: https://www.medscape.com/viewarticle/896257). The session discussed the scope of physician burnout and suicide, some of the causes, and explored potential solutions, including health IT-based innovations.
Our speakers included the following individuals, assembled by our members Deanne Kasim of Change Healthcare, and Dr. Michael Ross of Euclid Systems:
- Janae Sharp, Founder of the Sharp Index – an organization dedicated to reducing physician suicide and burnout through awareness and anonymous peer support, as well as better EHR tools for predicting and helping providers.
- Dr. Lucas Collazo, President of the Medical Staff at Inova Fairfax Hospital
- Wendy Dean, MD, Senior Vice President - Program Operations
Henry M. Jackson Foundation for the Advancement of Military Medicine
Since this is a topic on which many of our members have experience and expertise, we had a high degree of discussion within the group on this important subject.