Physicians Anonymous

Our stories

how to get sober if you’re addicted to medicine

How to get sober if you’re addicted to medicine

In Part 1, we made the case that a career in modern medicine meets the diagnostic criteria for addiction. Medicine can be unhealthy, yet we carry on or feel unable to make healthy changes. In Part 2, we explore how to get sober if you’re addicted to medicine.

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addicted to medicine

Addicted to medicine

Are physicians addicted to medicine? in this article I will argue that medicine can be so intoxicating, even if it’s bad for us, that doctors can become addicted to it. Before too long, a medical life becomes a way of life until we don’t know any different.

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Buffalo Med School

I Rise Part Two: Med School

This is part two of a guest blog by one of our senior mentors. She was a groundbreaker as a woman of color studying medicine in the 1970s. Here, she recounts her first year at Med School far from home.

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I Rise Part One: Pre-Med

This is part one of a guest blog by one of our senior mentors. She was a groundbreaker as a woman of color studying medicine in the 1970s. Here, she recounts her struggles in Pre-Med.

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physician rehab

Empathy in Recovery Part Two: Rehab and beyond

“For the first time in ages, I didn’t feel alone anymore that night. Despite the craziness that had happened in the days prior, I felt calm.

In this, our second Guest Physician blog by Dr Henry Harris, surgeon, alcoholic in recovery, and proudly Approved Physicians Anonymous Mentor, Dr Harris shares his experience of rehab as an alcoholic physician.

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Fear: of disclosure, losing my license, and losing face. This is my physician burnout story as a founder of Physicians Anonymous.

A Physician Burnout Story (Part 1)

My career and life crashed to a halt after 25 years in clinical medicine. I was at one point “suicidal with planning and intent”. Medical knowledge in the hands of a suicidal physician can be deadly. As an affluent, respected physician, confident in my position, well-liked and admired by society, yet suffering inside, why did I not seek help?

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Sir Dominic Corrigan was so busy 180 years ago that he had a “secret door” made in his consulting room to escape his eager patients.

Corrigan’s Secret Door and Other Stories

If you’ve not heard of Corrigan’s Secret Door, you’re in for a treat. Based on a legendary Irish physician, the Secret Door denotes a metaphorical escape route for busy physicians from their hectic clinics.

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In this article, we present resources for enhancing physician resilience for the burned-out physician or medical leader.

Resources for Physician Resilience

If there’s one good thing about a pandemic, it’s increased public awareness of their healthcare workers as human beings under stress. In this article, we have pulled together a number of resources for physician resilience developed by professional organizations for the interested physician reader and physician leader.

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Effective physician resilience programs

Effective Physician Resilience Programs: what works?

In this article, Part 2, I concede that there are some excellent principles differentiating ineffective from effective physician resilience programs. We hope that colleagues and medical leaders designing such programs will find the guidance useful, and further grasp the nettle of addressing the root causes of physician burnout.

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Medicine is Making Us (Physicians) Sick

Sick physicians – sick system

Practicing medicine is making us physicians sick. Physicians in the US have some of the highest burnout, mental illness, addiction, and suicide rates in the world. Medical student and physician burnout and suicide are a “silent epidemic”.

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physicians seek help

Why don’t physicians seek help?

Physicians are sick, and it’s getting worse. Yet too few doctors seek help or reach out when we are struggling. Record numbers of us are burning out, becoming mentally ill or addicted, retiring early, and leaving medicine.

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Physician Burnout and Suicide Report makes for disturbing reading: 42% of us are burned out.

Physician burnout report: “Death by 1,000 cuts”

Let’s talk about physician wellbeing in the COVID era. Burnout and depression are still serious problems among physicians, especially amid COVID-19. The 2021 Medscape National Physician Burnout and Suicide Report makes for disturbing reading. More than 12,000 doctors across 29 specialties responded to the anonymous survey which ran from August to December 2020. 

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