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Wellness Wednesday: Utilization of Strategic Duty-free Hours by OB/GYN Residents
Purpose: To detail the specifics of how OB/GYN residents utilize a
monthly duty-free afternoon for wellness activities.
Background: Much attention is paid to burnout and high rates of
depression among physicians. Some speculate these difficulties may start in
medical school but that they become cemented and sometimes problematic in
residency. Studies have made implications that interventions, specifically
promotion of self-care and work-family balance, and work hour restrictions,
early in residency can decrease burnout and depression levels.
Methods: Starting in 2016, all residents of an OB/GYN program
were allowed to have the first Wednesday afternoon of each month free from
clinical duties. Faculty members covered all clinical services from noon to
5pm. Residents were then permitted to use the time for whatever they felt
promoted their well-being. Two years of data were collected through surveys to
determine the specific activities completed by the residents.
Results: The commonly reported activities included health care
visits, financial planning activities, leisure time with family/friends,
community or church group events, every day errands, home chores, and fitness.
Additionally, the residents also used the time away from clinical
responsibilities to study and fulfill administrative requirements.
Discussions: By better understanding what residents choose to do to
promote their own well-being, programs can then tailor structured wellness
activities to those choices. Alternatively, programs can look at an
open-ended wellness day as a possible intervention for fostering excellent
overall health and welfare of their residents. More research is needed to
validate this approach to wellness promotion.
Quality & Safety, UME, CME, GME, Systems-Based Practice & Improvement, Professionalism, Residency Coordinator, Residency Director, Osteopathic Faculty, Clerkship Coordinator, Clerkship Director, Faculty, Resident, Student, 2019, CREOG & APGO Annual Meeting,