For many years physicians and hospital administrators erroneously thought that everyone was responsible for his or her own wellbeing. As a result, many prior wellness books or apps focused on individual factors such as physical exercise, diet, meditation, yoga, or mindfulness. Research has shown that systemic factors, not personal factors, contribute the most to our wellness as emergency physicians. While personal wellness practices are essential, more important are the system, institutional, or departmental factors. These will all be discussed in ACEP’s updated electronic wellness guidebook, which will be available in early 2021.
We know how important teamwork is in the emergency department, so the guidebook will focus on how to create a culture of cooperation. New and relevant topics will include emergency medicine leadership and C-suite responsiveness to systems issues; camaraderie, empathy, and connection; reducing the impact of shame; the impact of wellness officers; and wellness programs that really work.
The updated guidebook will also include personal photography and artwork from emergency physicians, each piece with an accompanying wellness narrative. A special resident section will focus on respect, bullying, and escaping exhaustion, among other topics. There will also be an audio section to showcase ACEP Scientific Assembly Wellness Story Booth podcasts.
Web-based and easily accessible, the wellness guidebook will have pertinent selections for emergency physicians at every career stage. We invite you to invest in yourself. Watch for more on ACEP’s new wellness guidebook soon—and check out our current guidebook, “Being Well in Emergency Medicine: ACEP’s Guide to Investing in Yourself”.
Dr. Manfredi is immediate past Chair of the ACEP Wellbeing Committee and associate clinical professor in the department of emergency medicine at The George Washington University School of Medicine in Washington, D.C.