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Studies Show that Young Female Physicians are Particularly Vulnerable to Burnout

All medical professionals have a duty to provide competent care. This can be difficult, however, when a physician is experiencing burnout. If you or someone close to you has suffered a medical injury that you believe was caused by burnout, we can help. Our Baltimore medical injury lawyers understand that figuring out whether a claim is worth pursuing can be both stressful and daunting. We want to take this stress away by figuring out the legalities in your case so you and your family can focus on healing.

Recent suicides have demonstrated that more than half of all physicians report symptoms of burnout. Burnout has been defined as long-term, unresolvable job stress that leads to feeling overwhelmed, cynical and even hopeless. Burnout also often leaves physicians feeling a lack personal accomplishment and this takes a serious toll. Alarmingly, suicide rates are twice as high among physicians as compared to other professionals.

New research shows that women are especially vulnerable to burnout. One study indicates that women experience more depressive symptoms in their first year of training as a doctor. Another study found that women quit the surgical field for a number of reasons: the impact of pregnancy; child-rearing; not enough female role models; sexism and discrimination; sexual harassment and assault; as well as poor mental health. Female physicians are not as likely to get patient referrals as their male counterparts in the same specialty; and by the end of the year, women earn, on average, $105,000 less than male specialists. All of these factors lead to burnout.

The reality is that physician burnout can impact a physician’s judgment and lead to medical malpractice. In Maryland, medical malpractice takes place when a physician violates the standard of care by failing to act with the level of skill, knowledge and care ordinarily required of a physician practicing in the same specialty. It is not enough, however, to establish that the physician violated the standard of care. Rather, as the injured patient, you must also show that the violation of the standard of care was a direct cause of the injury. A physician who is experiencing burnout may, for example, make errors in diagnosis or make technical mistakes. If these mistakes lead to patient harm, the patient may be able to hold the physician accountable through a medical malpractice claim.

Once medical malpractice is demonstrated, the injured patient may be able to recover damages such as medical expenses, lost income, pain and suffering, disability and more. Individuals who have lost a loved one because of medical malpractice may be able to recover funeral and burial costs, loss of companionship and more.

Medical negligence can lead to a range of consequences from misdiagnosis to surgical complications to wrongful death. If you have been injured due to a medical professional’s negligence, you may be able to recover compensation for your harm. At Arfaa Law Group, our seasoned Baltimore medical malpractice attorneys are committed to providing an honest and pragmatic review of your case. If we decide to move forward on the case, you can rest assured that we will thoroughly review your medical charts, locate the best experts and do everything possible to maximize your chances of a financial recovery. To learn more about your legal options, please call 410-889-1850 or contact us online.