Mistreatment And Distress Among Residents

Mistreatment: This survey study is required reading for residency program directors.  The authors utilized the US in-training examination to survey 7409 surgical residents (>99% of those eligible) regarding various types of mistreatment, burnout, and suicidal thoughts.  The most common types of mistreatment reported as occurring at least “a few times a year” were gender discrimination (65% of women), racial discrimination (17% of the cohort, not broken out by race), verbal or emotional abuse (30% of the cohort), and sexual harassment (20% of women).  Patients, families, and attendings were the most common sources of mistreatment, with co-residents and nurses responsible for much of the remainder. Thirty-nine percent of residents reported at least one 80-hour duty hours violation in the previous 6 months.  Burnout and suicidal thoughts were highly associated (OR > 2) with reports of any mistreatment at least a few times a year and with >2 duty-hour violations in the prior 6 months.  The only other strong predictor of suicidal thoughts was divorced or widowed marital status.  Although surgical residents are likely a high-risk group, similar results might be found among residents in other specialties.  Program directors and chief residents should continue to assess the environment in which their residents practice. — Laura Willett, MD

Hu YY, Ellis RJ, Hewitt DB, Yang AD, Cheung EO, Moskowitz JT, Potts JR 3rd, Buyske J, Hoyt DB, Nasca TJ, Bilimoria KY. Discrimination, Abuse, Harassment, and Burnout in Surgical Residency Training. N Engl J Med. 2019 Oct 31

Link to Article

This entry was posted in Graduate Medical Education and tagged , . Bookmark the permalink.