Survey: Many doctors unhappy

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Many doctors practicing today report not being happy in their work at all, causing problems in their personal lives as well. Some are so unhappy that they are considering leaving their medical practice completely, according to the 2006 American College of Physician Executives' Physician Morale Survey. Specific survey findings include:

  • Almost 60 percent of the 1,205 physicians surveyed have considered leaving the practice of medicine over discouragement over the state of healthcare currently;
  • Around 70 percent report knowing at least one physician who has left the practice of medicine because of low morale;
  • Contributing factors to low morale include: low reimbursement, loss of autonomy, bureaucratic red tape, patient overload and loss of respect;
  • Low morale leads to fatigue as the top problem (77 percent); emotional burnout (66 percent); marital or family discord and depression (32 percent); and 4 percent even report suicidal thoughts.

The complete survey findings are being reported in the November/December issue of the Physician Executive Journal of Medical Management.