Physician Burnout, Engagement, and Retention Survey

Jackson Physician Search in partnership with Medical Group Management Association (MGMA) October 2022

The results of this October 2022 survey illustrate the importance of focusing on Physician retention and well-being and acknowledging that one size doesn’t fit all. In my experience with working with clients, transparency is the key to many of the challenges facing Physicians and is a significant contributor to burnout. Transparency regarding physician compensation and methodology, wRVU data, administrative duties, invisible work, etc., is crucial to building and maintaining trust between employees and employers.

The lack of trust and transparency manifests in physicians resigning or retiring specifically due to burnout. Consider these statics resulting from the Jackson Physician Search and MGMA Report:

  • Before the pandemic and its myriad changes to healthcare, it was commonplace to see 6% to 7% of the physician workforce — approximately 50,000 doctors — change jobs or location.
  • MGMA Stat polling from August 2022 finds that four in 10 medical practices (40%) had a physician resign or retire early in the past year due to burnout.

Physician burnout — the long-term, cumulative stress and depersonalization that doctors experience amid growing burdens in the practice of medicine — continues to pose a major threat to a healthcare industry that remains in dire need of clinical leaders.

The World Health Organization (WHO), in its definition of burnout as a syndrome, points to three key components that contribute to chronic stress associated with work:

  1. Emotional exhaustion, leading to easily becoming irritable or downhearted
  2. Replacement of usual empathy with cynicism, negativity, and feeling emotionally numb (depersonalization)
  3. A low sense of professional effectiveness.

What do Physicians want? What is important to providing professional satisfaction in your work?

  • 62% Two-way communication with management/administration
  • 57% Additional compensation
  • 47% Equity in workload
  • 45% Reduced administrative burden
  • 35% Retention programs

“In this new normal, the demand for a shrinking supply of physicians will persist, making it crucial for practices to limit the damage via concerted efforts to reduce burnout and to strive for a positive work-life balance,” said Tony Stajduhar, president of Jackson Physician Search.

Read the full Jackson Physician Search and MGMA article here