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What neurologists are doing to combat high burout

By Admin | November 19, 2018

In a survey of about 1,600 active neurologists, the American Academy of Neurology (AAN) found that 60 percent experienced at least one symptom of burnout. A high number of neurology residents (73 percent) and fellows (55 percent) were also affected by burnout. With such a high rate of burnout among neurologists, the AAN began mitigation attempts at the individual, organizational and national levels at the same time as they measured burnout.

“The number that alarmed me was that even though 88 percent said the work they do is meaningful to them, the number that would choose to be a neurologist again was only about 67 percent. That should be an alarm in the U.S.” said Terrence L. Cascino, MD, immediate past president of the AAN.


The academy is an inaugural sponsor—along with the AMA and more than 30 other organizations—of the National Academy of Medicine Action Collaborative on Clinician Well-Being and Resilience. The AAN is also part of the AMA House of Delegates.

The AMA offers CME on physician burnout that can help you prevent physician burnout, create the organizational foundation for joy in medicine, create a strong team culture and improve physician resiliency.

Meanwhile, the AMA’s STEPS Forward™ open-access platform offers innovative strategies that allow physicians and their staff to thrive in the new health care environment.

Committed to making physician burnout a thing of the past, the AMA has studied, and is currently addressing, issues causing and fueling physician burnout—including time constraints, technology and regulations—to better understand the challenges physicians face.

Why are neurologists so burned out, as compared with colleagues in other medical specialties such as orthopedics or ophthalmology?

Cleveland Clinic neurologist Edward Manno, MD, has offered a personal perspective on that question.

“In neurology, you have to deal with conditions that affect the very essence of the person,” he told Neurology Today. “Anything to do with the brain has the capacity to change the nature of that individual. A patient can have a very small stroke, but if it’s in a targeted area it can have a profound effect on someone’s life. Neurologists have to deal with the emotional toll of discussing this with the patient and the family.” 

In 2015, Dr. Cascino launched a task force to research the issue of physician burnout—what it is, how it happens, and what can be done to deal with it effectively and improve work-life balance for neurologists. He continues this work as chair of the task force.

Find out how the AAN is addressing physician burnout and its impact on a neurologist’s lifestyle.

For more information on this, please read, What neurologists are doing to combat high burnout, by AMA Wire.

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