FHC #53: Diving deep into physician burnout and America’s views on Covid-19

two physicians talking; one is a man and the other a woman

Welcome back to the Fixing Healthcare series, “Diving Deep,” which features a robust and probing discussion into some of healthcare’s most complex subjects and deep-seated problems.

In this episode, Dr. Robert Pearl and Jeremy Corr dive deep into the unwritten rules of healthcare, which have long dictated for doctors and patients “the right way to act.” This installment focuses on the hidden causes of physician burnout and the growing divide between the CDC and public sentiment when it comes to dealing with Covid-19.

For more information on these topics, check out Dr. Pearl’s latest healthcare columns on Forbes and LinkedIn. For listeners interested in show notes, here’s a time-stamped discussion guide:

On physician burnout

[01:00] What was the most surprising insight from the 2022 Medscape survey on physician burnout?

[03:46] Beyond the stress of treating Covid patients, how do doctors explain their burnout?

[05:12] What then explains the significant uptick in burnout for OB/GYNs and pediatricians?

[06:44] How do burnout rates compare between men and women physicians?

[09:19] Studies show that work-related stress impacts a doctor’s personal life, but do problems at home spill over into a doctor’s job performance or feelings at work?

[13:58] What solutions might address the hidden causes of physician burnout?

On Covid-19 and public perception

[18:56] How do Americans perceive the risks of Covid-19 and what do public health officials have to say about it?

[23:28] If health officials and Americans can’t agree on appropriate safety measures, what happens?

[24:39] Why do Americans believe the pandemic is over (even if the CDC hasn’t declared it)?

[26:38] Does the CDC have any influence over the public’s perception of safety right now?

[28:20] Given the change in public opinion, how can health experts and elected officials save the most lives?

[29:25] How can we protect people who are at the greatest risk of dying from Covid-19?

* * *

Dr. Robert Pearl is the author of a book about medicine’s invisible yet highly influential physician culture. Check out “Uncaring: How Physician Culture Is Killing Doctors & Patients.” All profits from the book go to Doctors Without Borders.

Fixing Healthcare is a co-production of Dr. Robert Pearl and Jeremy Corr. Subscribe to the show via Apple, Spotify, Stitcher or wherever you find podcasts. Join the conversation or suggest a guest by following the show on Twitter and LinkedIn.