This essay reflects on the current physician shortages as revealed by the National Physician and Nurse Supply Survey and posted in the journal Entrepreneur. The survey carried on hospital CEO’s indicates 68 percent view these shortages as enigmatic and must be addressed (Caldwell 2007). This essay extensively covers physician shortages and the techniques the management applied to resolve this problem through a case study done on Banner Health. In specific, the problems discussed are workplace burnout and frustration which ended in loss of top talent. This highly affected client loyalty hence the overall financial performance of Banner Health. Management strategies on retaining physicians have also been tackled and have been in place for a year.
Job satisfaction in a physician’s work environment has been largely reduced by increased workload, lower workplace reimbursement and widely-felt powerlessness in the work environment leading to disenfranchisement and consequently leading to frustration. This is due to the fact that physicians rarely control global trends such as aging, cost versus reimbursement pressures, consumerism, changes in outpatient care and nursing shortages. Challenges such as conflict resolution, building workplace consensus and a rapidly changing market have been largely ignored in medical training. Intervention therefore, if not implemented, brings about physician workplace burnout. Burnout is a condition that occurs when demands placed against the physician exceed his personal ability to cope bringing about psychological anguish, physical illnesses, and clinical errors in the area of jurisdiction. Three priority items have been listed by the Maslach Burnout Inventory as: emotional exhaustion, decline in personal empathy and lack of self-actualization which weigh heavily in retaining surgeons. A study on 382 practicing surgeons in the U.S showed that 32 percent suffered emotional exhaustion, 13 percent felt depersonalized and 4 percent felt unaccomplished. This goes a long way to support that surgeons should not only be taught surgery but also life skills.
This case study is on Banner Health, a firm located in Phoenix, Arizona, and operates 10 hospitals in Phoenix and one in Arizona under its mother company. Banner Medical Group (BMG). Physicians are employed by the firm to provide adequate primary care for its patients and help with subspecialty calls on patient assists. Physician turnover rates were found to be in excess of 10 percent hence the management decided to implement an on-boarding program which would ensure physicians would not leave prematurely by fully engaging newly employed physicians.
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