For most of the general population, the pandemic is starting to feel like it’s a thing of the past. However, while most of us have found a sense of normalcy within our lives, the healthcare system is still reeling from its effects thereby impacting healthcare workers within it. What is the impact on Canadian physicians? What are the current consequences of the pandemic on their personal and professional lives? More specifically, how does this all impact the management of their workload? MD Analytics surveyed 50 family medicine physicians and 90 specialists on the topic of their professional and mental state 3 years after the onset of the pandemic.
As compared to pre-pandemic, an overwhelming majority of physicians are reporting feeling more tired and burned out. In order to interpret what specific aspects may have led to physicians feeling depleted, the respondents were asked to evaluate a list of attributes on whether they have gotten worse, better or stable when compared to the start of the COVID-19 pandemic. Consequently, most physicians have stated that their quality of life in the workplace was the top attribute that was negatively impacted by the pandemic. This was followed very closely by a hindrance on their level of professional fulfillment. Physicians also mention that their ability to continue to learn about their areas of expertise has been hampered by the pandemic. Moreover, over half of physicians claim that their mental health has gotten worse since the start of the pandemic.
To cope with these physical and mental health issues, 1 in 3 doctors mention that they have chosen to reduce their workload in the past 2 years, with many more planning to do so in the coming year. This mainly has to do with physicians wanting to reduce their level of stress and improving their sense of work-life balance. As a result of these reduced workloads, almost half of physicians mention that their ability to engage with the pharmaceutical industry has gotten worse because of the pandemic. These findings suggest that there is a need to provide support to the healthcare community for their overall wellbeing to help improve optimal patient care for all.
- What impact has the COVID crisis had on physicians 3 years later?
- What is the current professional and mental state of our HCPs?