Perspectives: How Collaborative Care Combats Physician Burnout

TTA has an open invitation to industry leaders to contribute to our Perspectives non-promotional opinion and thought leadership area. Today’s contribution is from Sussan Nwogwugwu, DNP, PMHNP, Clinical Leader at Done. In this article, Dr. Nwogwugwu discusses physician burnout, how it can affect delivery of care, and how collaborative and comprehensive care can mitigate burnout.

Done is a leading provider of telehealth services for individuals with ADHD, dedicated to delivering comprehensive, patient-first care. With a network that spans more than 35 states, Done connects individuals with ADHD to experienced, board-certified providers for personalized treatment plans and medication management. 

Physician burnout is a significant concern, as it affects not only physician well-being but the quality of care they deliver.

The state of primary physician burnout
The American Medical Association found that at the end of 2021, nearly 63% of physicians had reported burnout symptoms. This was roughly a 66% increase from the preceding year, highlighting the urgent need for systemic changes to support physician mental and emotional health. Increasing burnout is attributed to excessive workload, administrative burdens and lack of support and resources.

Collaborative care and its benefits
Collaboration between a team of multidisciplinary healthcare professionals decreases clinician workload and leads to enhanced job satisfaction. Additionally, feelings of isolation and burnout among physicians are reduced. Most importantly, the continued skill building and exchange of knowledge contribute to professional growth.

For mental health patients, collaborative care ensures holistic care and access to specialized services and continuity of care, particularly for patients managing chronic conditions.

Comprehensive care supports providers
A collaborative care model is designed to reduce the burden on primary care providers; and enhance clinician well-being and patient care by integrating comprehensive behavioral health support within the primary care framework. Comprehensive care supports providers in several ways:

Impact analysis
Impact analysis, primarily powered by data analytics software, provides insights into treatment effectiveness. It is particularly helpful in guiding interventions.

Impact analysis further addresses burnout and other issues by identifying areas for improvement, ultimately guaranteeing effective resource allocation and helping track the progress of interventions over time for better adjustments.

Evidence-based interventions (EBI)
EBI enables providers to use resources efficiently by enlightening them on what works and does not. It also enhances job satisfaction and morale, ultimately leading to better patient outcomes. Finally, using evidence-based treatments reduces the chances of facing legal action if something goes wrong.

Physicians leverage technology to learn more about EBIs across various medical fields; that can include digital libraries/databases, clinical decision support systems, mobile applications, telehealth platforms and online resources.

Frequent reviews and an inclusive patient approach
Frequent reviews help identify and address areas for practice improvement due to informative feedback they provide. An inclusive patient approach reduces burnout and provides a sense of fulfillment among providers by nurturing greater patient engagement and increasing satisfaction.

Comprehensive care supports patients
In addition to benefiting health care providers, comprehensive care benefits patients, too.

Impact analysis
Impact analysis fosters an in-depth understanding of a patient’s needs and responses to treatment, leading to more personalized care. Patients can also make informed decisions about their health and treatment options, guided by physician recommendations on helpful online resources.

Evidence-based interventions
EBI supports patients, reduces the risk of adverse effects, and ascertains that patients receive appropriate, high-quality, rigorously tested and proven care. Additionally, since EBI is founded on research and clinical evidence, it guarantees better health outcomes.

Frequent reviews and an inclusive patient approach
Frequent reviews enable personalized care and continuous treatment plan adjustment per each patient’s progress and feedback. Remote patient monitoring technologies like smart watches or mobile health apps help to track key health metrics and symptoms, thereby fostering patient empowerment and ensuring adherence to treatment plans by involving them in their own care.

Why medicine is shifting toward value-based care
Medicine is gradually shifting to a value-based care model to deliver patient-centered, effective, cost-efficient healthcare. This is in response to the conventional fee-for-service model that incentivizes quantity over quality, which results in unnecessary procedures, fragmented care and unsustainable healthcare costs.

Technology, a key defining factor in value-based care, leverages EHRs, telemedicine platforms and data analytics tools to refine ADHD care and eliminate draining tasks that lead to burnout.

Telemedicine platforms enable remote consultations, making it easier for patients to access specialized services without the need for physical visits. Additionally, data analytics tools track patient outcomes and identify trends, allowing for more personalized and effective treatment plans.

Through integrating EHRs, telemedicine platforms and advanced data analytics, multidisciplinary healthcare teams can streamline communication and coordination. EHRs provide team members access to up-to-date patient information, thereby reducing errors and enhancing continuity of care.

Collaborative + comprehensive care = value-based care
Collaborative and comprehensive care, combined with technology tools, contribute to value-based care by enhancing patient experience and treatment outcomes; and optimizing resource utilization.

These care models collectively promote improved population health, foster accountability and transparency and encourage continuous improvement.

Through collaborative care models, the value of health care is maximized and aligns with value-based care goals, alleviating increasing levels of physician burnout.

Categories: Latest News, Opinion, and Perspectives.

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