Cultivating Well-Being and Beating Burnout

Claire Bender, MD, FACR

This post was contributed by Claire Bender, MD, FACR, chair of the ACR Commission on Human Resources and Lori Deitte, MD, FACR, chair of the ACR Commission on Publications and Lifelong Learning.

Stress, depression, anxiety and fatigue. As radiologists, we face these all-too-familiar symptoms at a distressingly high frequency. What does it amount to? A growing and dangerous challenge faced by physicians everywhere—burnout. According to the 2019 Medscape Radiology Lifestyle Report, almost half of radiologists surveyed admitted to burnout. Many facing this challenge feel uncomfortable broaching the topic with their supervisors or other colleagues. It has become abundantly clear we must work together to combat this issue.

We’re proud to announce the launch of the American College of Radiology (ACR) Radiologist Well-Being Program. We’ve also created a toolkit to help you take action to manage your own stress or empower a struggling colleague.

Deitte Professional Photo PREFERRED
Lori Deitte, MD, FACR

The program offers a variety of resources to assess your level of wellness and identify ways to improve your well-being over time. Participants have free access to the following:

  • The proven and trusted Well-Being Index (WBI) survey tool, created by the Mayo Clinic to help physicians anonymously self-evaluate their level of well-being
  • A toolkit of radiologist-specific, high-impact articles and resources on critical well-being topics such as work-life balance, health behavior, emotional concerns, relationships and more, all accessible within the WBI
  • A well-being curriculum, offering educational wellness resources appropriate for residents, medical students and career physicians

This program is available to all ACR members, including residents, fellows and medical students. We encourage you to take advantage of the full toolkit. Complete the WBI survey, explore the articles and resources on critical wellness topics and embrace the comprehensive curriculum. It’s time to stop suffering in silence. The American College of Radiology cares about your well-being and is here to help.

Please share your thoughts in the comments section below and join the discussion on Engage (login required).


Lifelong Learning for All Physicians

Deitte Professional Photo PREFERREDLori A. Deitte, MD, FACR, chair of the ACR Commission on Publications and Lifelong Learning (CoPLL) contributed this post.

The ACR has long been committed to meeting the lifelong professional development needs of radiologists and other radiology professionals. We also recognize our position of influence among our colleagues across other aspects of medicine.

That’s why we were so excited when the American Medical Association (AMA) approached us earlier this year with an invitation to become the first medical specialty society content partner for their new online education portal, the AMA Ed Hub™. Launched this week, AMA Ed Hub provides a streamlined way to find, earn, track and report continuing medical education (CME) and other education.

As part of this partnership, ACR is proud to offer a selected portion of its many educational opportunities to physicians of all specialties. Topics addressed in this sampling of our resources include physician leadership, data science, research and clinical practice management.

In addition to the ACR content, the AMA Ed Hub features activities on clinical and interdisciplinary topics from a variety of trusted sources, including the CME activities from the Journal of the American Medical Association (JAMA) Network’s JN Learning and AMA STEPs Forward. The AMA is also working toward collaborating with other organizations to expand the library of educational opportunities available through the AMA Ed Hub.

At launch, AMA Ed Hub automatically reports education credits earned through the platform directly to select medical licensing boards. Physicians who are board certified with the American Board of Internal Medicine, the American Board of Pediatrics or licensed in Tennessee or North Carolina will be the first to experience automatic credit reporting through the platform. The AMA plans to expand these capabilities to additional specialty and state boards.

We encourage ACR members and all physicians to take advantage of this new educational platform that the AMA hopes will make the process of obtaining credits for continued learning as effective and as streamlined as possible.

  • Which of the ACR’s educational opportunities has most benefited you?
  • What additional educational resources are you interested in?

Please share your thoughts in the comments section below and join the discussion on Engage (login required).


Building the Pipeline of Female Radiology Leaders

canon19_retouchedThis post was contributed by Cheri Canon, MD, FACR, professor and chair of radiology at the University of Alabama at Birmingham School of Medicine

After spending summers working in a family practice physician office and as a clerk on an ICU ward, I knew medicine was for me. However, radiology was a late decision and a pivot, as I was headed towards a career in orthopedics. An elective in radiology was a game-changer. However, although the healthcare workforce is approximately 70 percent female, there were very few female leaders in medicine, especially radiology. Women occupy only about 30 percent of all high-level leadership positions in healthcare, and only 32 percent of radiologists were women as of 2018. 17 percent of radiology chairs are women. This has doubled since I first became a chair – a great trajectory but a long way from equity. We have so much more to do.

Both as a professor and in my faculty role with the ACR’s Radiology Leadership Institute (RLI), I have unique opportunities to mentor and sponsor future female #RadLeaders, and champion the causes that are critically important to us.

Two years ago at the RLI Leadership Summit, I grabbed coffee with Rachel Gilbreath, who leads GE Healthcare’s strategy for academic medical centers across the U.S. Together we realized we had the same problem. Although women make up half of medical students and over half of the industry entry-level workforce, the numbers rapidly decline with the ascent to leadership. Although I’m a radiologist and Rachel represents the commercial side of the healthcare industry, we faced common challenges including gender bias, identifying mentors and sponsors and building community with other women in our field. It didn’t seem to be a pipeline problem. We had the same glass ceiling.

So how could we bring women in healthcare together to elevate their careers and embrace their leadership potential? That is how the Leading Empowering and Disrupting (LEAD) Program was born. LEAD is a yearlong program that focuses on monthly learning, designated mentors, professional development and live networking sessions.

After a highly competitive application process, we selected our inaugural class of 20 female radiologists and GE Healthcare employees. These women come together both virtually and in-person to learn from each other and tackle challenges together. LEAD participants are also paired with female and male executive leaders who help these emerging leaders reshape the typical industry and academic relationships and connect in new ways.

Our end goal is to make our new program irrelevant as soon as possible. Perhaps Sheryl Sandberg said it best: “In the future, there will be no female leaders. There will just be leaders.” Rachel and I are excited to make this shared vision a reality.

  • When and how did you realize you wanted to pursue a career in radiology?
  • How did you identify your mentor/mentee? What has surprised you most about the challenges or opportunities she, and you, are facing?

Please share your thoughts in the comments section below and join the discussion on Engage (login required).