Study explores top drivers of oncologist burnout amid COVID-19 — 5 notes

A drop in face-to-face patient interaction was the top factor contributing to oncologists' burnout during the pandemic prior to vaccine availability, according to recent survey findings

A total of 259 community-based medical oncologists and hematologists in the U.S. completed the online survey between October and December 2020 — before the widespread distribution of vaccines. The research findings, conducted by researchers at Cardinal Health, were presented Sept. 24 at the American Society of Clinical Oncology's Quality Care Summit. 

Forty-six percent of respondents selected loss of face-to-face patient interaction as the top factor contributing to burnout, followed by financial loss by practice (42 percent), and reduced patient volume (35 percent).

Four more findings: 

1. Sixty-percent of respondents reported a moderate to severe impact on their professional lives. Sixty-five percent said the same of their personal lives. 

2. Of those who reported adverse effects to their professional and personal lives, concern of transmitting COVID-19 was the top concern.

3. Fifty percent of respondents agreed or strongly agreed that they had increased burnout at work since the start of the pandemic. At the same time 51 percent assessed their workload as stable, while 33 percent said it was reduced amid the pandemic. 

4. Respondents pointed to virtual visits as the top factor affecting pay (38 percent), followed by employer pay cuts (33 percent), and elective procedure cancellations (31 percent). 

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