EM Physician Organizations Form Mental Health Collaborative, Issue Joint Statement and Call to Action Regarding Mental Health Care Stigma in EM
Each year in the U.S., roughly 300 to 400 physicians die by suicide—approximately double the suicide rate in the general population. More than half of physicians know of a physician who has either considered, attempted, or died by suicide and 20 percent know of a physician who has either considered, attempted, or died by suicide since the start of the COVID-19 pandemic.
Moreover, when it comes to COVID-19 impacts, particularly on the mental health of EM physicians during the COVID-19 pandemic, nine in ten EM physicians say they are more stressed since the start of the pandemic: 72 percent report experiencing more professional burnout, and more than half report inappropriate feelings of anger, tearfulness or anxiety.
Yet, despite COVID’s growing toll on the mental health and well-being of EM physicians, nearly half are hesitant to seek mental health treatment due to stigma in the workplace. Beyond the local workplace, information about seeking mental health treatment is frequently part of staff privilege applications and for some states, required disclosure for obtaining/renewing the medical license. As a result, more than a quarter (27 percent) of emergency physicians have avoided seeking needed mental health treatment for fear of professional repercussionsRead the Full Statement