Disruptive Physician Toolkit

Posted by Dike Drummond MD

Disruptive Physician Toolkit – how to raise your concerns and avoid being labeled

“Disruptive Physician” is one of the most misused terms in healthcare these days.

Most of the time it is used to silence legitimate concerns from hard working, caring physicians. Even worse is the feminine version of this toxic label - the "B Word".

Once you get either label, it can be very difficult to recover your reputation or work your way back into a position of influence. Being tossed under the bus like this is the most common cause of physicians quitting their current job. 

This whole tragic miscommunication is avoidable 90% of the time, if you learn the rules to communicating with administrators when you are upset. 

In this article let me show you an extremely important skill for any employed physician -- or any physician leader below the level of CEO ...

How to communicate your legitimate concerns up the chain of command and NOT GET LABELED "DISRUPTIVE"

Tags: Physician Burnout, Physician Leadership, disruptive physician toolkit


Are You Seeing this Delusional Behavior from Your Leadership Team??

Posted by Dike Drummond MD

We call it the SINE WAVE DELUSION and it goes like this:

  • Your organization lost money in the last year because of lower patient visit and surgery volumes due to COVID-19. It was a Pandemic Profit Crater.

  • The leadership team cut your support staff in an effort to cut expenses/save money. Keep the ship afloat, weather the storm was the thinking. Mission accomplished, you are still here.

  • Now they expect you to make up the income shortfall by producing higher patient visit volumes and RVU's than ever before, without giving you back the support staff to hit those production targets. Just Spin that Gerbil Wheel Faster! If you can see even more patients with lower staff expense, we will be able to make up last years losses. Come on, you are a team player aren't you?

  • And now doctors are quitting. Burned out and bloodied, many labeled as disruptive. It is the healthiest thing to do for you and your family in many cases.

  • You haven't quit yet - and the thought of abandoning your patients, staff and colleagues keeps you rooted to your current practice, despite these lunatic work expectations.

Tags: Physician Leadership, stop physician burnout


Racist and Sexist MicroAggressions are a Common Cause of Physician Burnout

Posted by Dike Drummond MD

I am a big, old, straight, American cis male physician, showered in white privilege and given a free pass in the realm of bias and discrimination. 

I have coached hundreds of burned out physicians over the last 12 years. Our conversations are intimate and authentic for a simple reason; there is no change without first telling the truth.

Whenever one of my coaching clients varies from my personal characteristics - in terms of race, ethnicity, gender, native language, sexual orientation or any other variable - we both know that bias and discrimination play some role in their burnout. They tell me the truth of what is going on. I tell them when I see subtle and obvious bias and discrimination from my position of privilege.

[I freely acknowledge I did not earn this position. It is only a reflection of the random combination of chromosomes that looks back at me from the mirror in the morning. As a coach it offers me the equivalent of a Litmus Test: I ask, "if it was me instead of my client in this situation, would I be treated the same way?" If the answer is NO, bias and discrimination is in play.]

For these physicians, each week contains a subset of words and deeds that hurt. The aggressors may be patients, staff, the general population or even leaders and physician colleagues.

  • Some hurt on purpose with looks, language and actions used deliberately to wound the physician as a human being.
  • Others are unconsciously woven into the fabric of our society and the healthcare system itself. 


TWO (obvious) QUESTIONS:

1) Just how often do physicians who are not white and not cis males experience these feelings of bias and discrimination in the course of their work life?

2) Is the frequency of these "microaggressions" associated with burnout in these doctors?

A recent study answers both.

  • 94% experienced sexist microaggressions
  • 81% experienced racist microaggressions
  • Each and both were linked to the physician's burnout risk

Let me show you why these results (which might seem shocking to you) are what I consider to be a best case scenario.

And ... let me ask you if this strikes you as important new information or an obvious "DUH of the Day"?

Tags: Physician Burnout, bias and discrimination in healthcare


How to Talk to Senior Leaders About a Corporate Physician Wellness Strategy

Posted by Dike Drummond MD

Just how do you begin a conversation with your senior leadership team about building out a Corporate Physician Wellness Strategy?

What is the best way to bring up the staggering costs of physician burnout and the benefits of a corporate physician wellness strategy -- if your senior leaders are not already engaged in this dialog?

We have supported hundreds of doctors around the world who act as physician wellbeing insurgents in their organization - working hard to get the attention of the C-Suite on the need for a burnout prevention strategy at the level of the organization. 

Learn from our 10 years and over 175 organization experience in these critically important discussions. 

In Physicians On Purpose (POP) Podcast #18...

    • Learn how to start the conversation on a level playing field of shared understanding.
    • Learn the 3 competitive advantages of physician wellbeing.
    • Learn where to get backup and support on HOW to get started on your organizations strategy.
All in ... POP PODCAST #25:

Talking With Senior Leaders about a Corporate Physician Wellness Strategy

Tags: Physician Leadership, stop physician burnout, physicians on purpose podcast


Two More States Pass Laws Protecting Physician Wellness Programs

Posted by Dike Drummond MD

No doctor should hesitate to participate in a Physician Wellness Program because of the risk of discoverability and judgement down the road.

  • What if the state medical board finds out?
  • What if my specialty society or the insurance companies that are our payors find out?

These should never be questions you worry about before you reach out for support.  With burnout rates of 40%+ and over 400 physician suicides a year in the USA alone, we must do all we can to remove barriers to doctors asking for and receiving support in their time of need.

Legislation to provide immunity to Wellness Program participants is an important piece of this effort.

Unfortunately, here in the USA, we are a nation of states. This immunity from discoverability will have to come via state laws.

Good News ...
there appears to be an immunity support wave building in state legislatures around the country. It is still early and now the count is three!

Tags: physician wellbeing