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Medscape Psychiatrist Lifestyle, Happiness & Burnout Report 2022

Sylvie M. Baggett; Keith L. Martin | February 18, 2022 | Contributor Information

The lingering effects of a global pandemic continue to take a toll on the nation's physicians, and psychiatrists are no exception.

In this year's report, Medscape explores physicians' happiness with their personal lives and their professional work, how their marriages and personal relationships are faring, as well as how they are maintaining their physical and mental health. More than 13,000 physicians across 29 specialties responded to the survey.

(Note: Some totals in this presentation do not equal 100% due to rounding.)

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Medscape Psychiatrist Lifestyle, Happiness & Burnout Report 2022

Sylvie M. Baggett; Keith L. Martin | February 18, 2022 | Contributor Information

Seventy-nine percent of psychiatrists said they were "very" or "somewhat" happy outside of work prior to the global pandemic, like physicians overall (81%).

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Medscape Psychiatrist Lifestyle, Happiness & Burnout Report 2022

Sylvie M. Baggett; Keith L. Martin | February 18, 2022 | Contributor Information

The stress and strain of the pandemic continues to affect physicians of various specialties. The percentage of psychiatrists who say they are currently "very" or "somewhat" happy outside of work is similar to that of physicians overall (59%).

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Medscape Psychiatrist Lifestyle, Happiness & Burnout Report 2022

Sylvie M. Baggett; Keith L. Martin | February 18, 2022 | Contributor Information

Psychiatrists were in the lower range of burned-out physicians in our survey. In last year's report, 42% of physicians reported that they are burned out; that's risen to 47% this year.

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Medscape Psychiatrist Lifestyle, Happiness & Burnout Report 2022

Sylvie M. Baggett; Keith L. Martin | February 18, 2022 | Contributor Information

Female psychiatrists reported being burned out at a greater rate than their male colleagues.

"There's no question that women have reported far more role strain during the pandemic than men," says Carol A. Bernstein, MD, psychiatrist at Montefiore Health System and professor and vice chair for faculty development and wellbeing at Albert Einstein College of Medicine. "Often women assumed more of the childcare and homeschooling responsibilities in their households. As a result, we know that more women dropped out of the workforce. Also, past studies indicate that women are more likely to report feelings of burnout than men."

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Medscape Psychiatrist Lifestyle, Happiness & Burnout Report 2022

Sylvie M. Baggett; Keith L. Martin | February 18, 2022 | Contributor Information

The volume of bureaucratic tasks is the main contributor to psychiatrist burnout, even moreso than for physicians overall (60%). Too many work hours, lack of respect from colleagues, lack of control or autonomy, and increasing use of EHRs and other technology were also selected as major factors in this year's report. (Participants could choose more than one response.)

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Medscape Psychiatrist Lifestyle, Happiness & Burnout Report 2022

Sylvie M. Baggett; Keith L. Martin | February 18, 2022 | Contributor Information

Thirty-eight percent of psychiatrists feel that their personality type contributes to their burnout, similar to physicians overall (34%).

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Medscape Psychiatrist Lifestyle, Happiness & Burnout Report 2022

Sylvie M. Baggett; Keith L. Martin | February 18, 2022 | Contributor Information

About half of psychiatrists reported that they were more burned out now than during the initial months of the pandemic, similar to physicians overall (55%). About a third said their burnout was the same.

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Medscape Psychiatrist Lifestyle, Happiness & Burnout Report 2022

Sylvie M. Baggett; Keith L. Martin | February 18, 2022 | Contributor Information

Nearly 7 in 10 psychiatrists say burnout affects their relationships, about the same proportion as for physicians overall (68%).

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Medscape Psychiatrist Lifestyle, Happiness & Burnout Report 2022

Sylvie M. Baggett; Keith L. Martin | February 18, 2022 | Contributor Information

Psychiatrists reduced their hours on the job as their top strategy to quell burnout. Top strategies among physicians overall included reduced hours and meditation or other stress-reduction techniques. (Participants could choose more than one response.)

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Medscape Psychiatrist Lifestyle, Happiness & Burnout Report 2022

Sylvie M. Baggett; Keith L. Martin | February 18, 2022 | Contributor Information

The majority of psychiatrists are currently in a committed relationship, with 76% either married or living with a partner. A somewhat higher percentage (83%) of physicians overall report being in such a relationship.

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Medscape Psychiatrist Lifestyle, Happiness & Burnout Report 2022

Sylvie M. Baggett; Keith L. Martin | February 18, 2022 | Contributor Information

Eighty-one percent of psychiatrists say they are in a "very good" or "good" marriage. This is the same as in last year's report.

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Medscape Psychiatrist Lifestyle, Happiness & Burnout Report 2022

Sylvie M. Baggett; Keith L. Martin | February 18, 2022 | Contributor Information

Most physicians, no matter the specialty, appear to be in happy marriages.

Psychiatrists are toward the middle of all specialties when it comes to marital happiness. Otolaryngologists and allergists topped the list (both 91%), followed closely by dermatologists, rheumatologists, and nephrologists (all 90%).

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Medscape Psychiatrist Lifestyle, Happiness & Burnout Report 2022

Sylvie M. Baggett; Keith L. Martin | February 18, 2022 | Contributor Information

A bit more than half of psychiatrists are married to or partners with someone who does not work in medicine. This is similar to the proportion among all physicians (56%).

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Medscape Psychiatrist Lifestyle, Happiness & Burnout Report 2022

Sylvie M. Baggett; Keith L. Martin | February 18, 2022 | Contributor Information

Among psychiatrists balancing parenthood and a medical career, female physicians noted feeling conflicted more often than their male peers (36% vs 22% were "very conflicted" or "conflicted").

This general attitude is reflected in almost all occupations, according to a Pew Research survey, which found that larger shares of mothers than fathers struggled with childcare responsibilities during the pandemic.

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Medscape Psychiatrist Lifestyle, Happiness & Burnout Report 2022

Sylvie M. Baggett; Keith L. Martin | February 18, 2022 | Contributor Information

Around half of psychiatrists said they are willing to take a cut in pay for better work-life balance or more free time. This is similar among physicians overall (55%).

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Medscape Psychiatrist Lifestyle, Happiness & Burnout Report 2022

Sylvie M. Baggett; Keith L. Martin | February 18, 2022 | Contributor Information

Among all physicians who said they were depressed, about a quarter (24%) said they were clinically depressed. A greater proportion (39%) of psychiatrists reported the same.

"Burnout is a syndrome caused by occupational stress, whereas depression is an illness caused by many different biological, psychological, and social (including occupational) factors. As such, they can be causally related in both directions — burnout can be a vulnerability factor that leads to depression, and depression can make an individual more likely to suffer burnout," says Peter Yellowlees, MD, an expert in physician health.

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Medscape Psychiatrist Lifestyle, Happiness & Burnout Report 2022

Sylvie M. Baggett; Keith L. Martin | February 18, 2022 | Contributor Information

About half of depressed psychiatrists said their depression does not have an impact on relationships with patients. Of those who saw an impact, the major behaviors they reported were being easily exasperated with patients and feeling less motivated to take patient notes carefully. (Participants could choose more than one response.)

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Medscape Psychiatrist Lifestyle, Happiness & Burnout Report 2022

Sylvie M. Baggett; Keith L. Martin | February 18, 2022 | Contributor Information

Psychiatrists are choosing to spend their time with the ones they love and doing the things they enjoy as main drivers to maintain their well-being, as are physicians overall. (Participants could choose more than one response.)

Alexis Polles, MD, medical director for the Professionals Resource Network, which assists impaired physicians, says that when doctors' lives get unbalanced, they need to find things that restore energy and joy.

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Medscape Psychiatrist Lifestyle, Happiness & Burnout Report 2022

Sylvie M. Baggett; Keith L. Martin | February 18, 2022 | Contributor Information

Perhaps it's not surprising that more physicians were happier with their work-life balance before the pandemic. Among psychiatrists, that was also the case.

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Medscape Psychiatrist Lifestyle, Happiness & Burnout Report 2022

Sylvie M. Baggett; Keith L. Martin | February 18, 2022 | Contributor Information

Toyota, Honda, and Subaru are among the most popular makes of cars among psychiatrists. Respondents could choose as many makes as applied.

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Medscape Psychiatrist Lifestyle, Happiness & Burnout Report 2022

Sylvie M. Baggett; Keith L. Martin | February 18, 2022 | Contributor Information

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Medscape Psychiatrist Lifestyle, Happiness & Burnout Report 2022

Sylvie M. Baggett; Keith L. Martin | February 18, 2022 | Contributor Information

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Medscape Psychiatrist Lifestyle, Happiness & Burnout Report 2022

Sylvie M. Baggett; Keith L. Martin | February 18, 2022 | Contributor Information

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2022 Physician Lifestyle & Happiness Report

More than 10,000 physicians in various specialties told Medscape how they are faring amid the global pandemic.Medscape Features Slideshow, Jan 2022
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