Featured | MAR 12, 2020

Addressing Physician Burnout: Strategies for CME Tracking

This blog addresses the pressing issue of physician burnout, citing its prevalence, causes, and impacts on patient care. It emphasizes the need to alleviate burdens, advocating the use of the CE App Elite.


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Physician burnout is considered a growing epidemic according to the AMA, with negative impacts not only on the physicians themselves but also on their patients and the healthcare system. Physician burnout is classified as “a long-term stress reaction marked by emotional exhaustion, depersonalization, and a lack of sense of personal accomplishment”.

Recent studies have shown that 42% of U.S. physicians report feeling burned out, 15% are depressed, and 14% identify as both.

The highest rates of burnout are among family physicians, intensivists, internists, neurologists and OB-GYNs. Efforts to identify the causes of physician burnout and potential remedies are becoming a necessity as patient care declines and the cost to replace physicians continues to increase.

Physicians often have a hard time finding a suitable work-life balance. Studies have shown that physicians spend “27 percent of their time interacting directly with patients and 49 percent of their time on EHRs and desk work when working long hours every week. “ This is a significant amount of time spent on clerical duties that detract from the time allocated to patient-physician interactions. Not only are doctors overwhelmed with clerical work in the office, but many don’t finish their clerical duties during business hours which forces physicians to extend their hours, thus contributing to their already long workdays.

On average, physicians work between 40-60 hours per week, and approximately 20 hours per week are spent doing administrative work. This growing ratio of time spent in front of a computer screen to the time spent in front of a patient is driving burnout in physicians and prompts them to leave for another facility or to leave medicine entirely.
With all of these stressors maligning physicians and their mental health, it is an imperative social service to alleviate these burdens wherever applicable.

Physicians are responsible for being up to date on their required continuing education (CE/CME) activities which are necessary to renew their licenses. The credits physicians need from these courses vary by license and often come with a laundry list of requirements. Keeping tabs on how many credits are still needed, which topics have to be met, and where CE events are taking place all in a short period of time adds an undue amount of busywork on the physician.
At ACEA, we believe clinicians shouldn’t spend unnecessary administrative time. Thankfully, there is a solution, the CE App Elite helps save up to 40 hours per year for clinicians who shouldn’t be wasting their time on administrative tasks. The service tracks certificates CE/CME automatically, counts up requirements, sends renewal reminders, and curates relevant content to fulfill whatever is left.
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You can also join the basic CE App for free and try CE App Elite for free to get an improved experience with continuing education. Automating the continuing education process is a small but tangible step towards lifting the administrative and clerical burdens that weigh heavily on the modern American physician.

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