Doctor Burnout: Risks, Causes, and Consequences

Doctors have a very strenuous job – however, their job is also extremely important to the well-being of the people they treat. Many physicians report feeling stressed and burned out as a result of their profession, which can lead to dangerous medical errors. Have you suffered injuries due to doctor burnout?

Doctor Burnout Statistics

A national survey found that over half of American doctors experience burnout, making them more likely to cause medical errors. Out of the 6,700 clinic and hospital physicians surveyed:

  • Over 10% of doctors stated that they committed at least one severe medical mistake in the three months before the survey
  • 55% of doctors reported burnout
  • 6.5% of doctors reported contemplating suicide
  • Approximately one-third of doctors reported excessive fatigue
  • Doctors experiencing burnout were twice as likely to make a mistake as those who do not experience burnout
  • Prior studies tied medical errors to 100,000 to 200,000 patient deaths each year
  • 4% of study participants described the safety record of their workplace as “poor” or “failing”

Causes of Doctor Burnout

Doctors often report burnout due to their excessive workloads and the high-stress environment of their jobs. Researchers from Stanford University outlined a series of causes that can contribute to doctor burnout:

  • High-risk tasks that jeopardize other lives
  • Lack of control over the job
  • Lack of satisfaction in the job
  • Regulatory burdens and regulations
  • Reimbursement tightening

If you have a doctor experiencing serious burnout, you could find yourself at risk. The doctor could administer the wrong medication, make a mistake during surgery, or diagnose you with the wrong condition, among many other consequences.

Doctors can make many life-threatening mistakes while experiencing burnout. Have you suffered injuries due to negligent medical care? Contact Regan Zambri Long today to schedule a free consultation with one of our DC medical malpractice attorneys.