Swipe to advance
1 of 29

Scroll

Medscape Cardiologist Lifestyle, Happiness & Burnout Report 2021

Keith L. Martin; Mary Lyn Koval | February 19, 2021 | Contributor Information

Events of the past year challenged the happiness, wellness, and lifestyles of many, but especially those in the healthcare field. Whether on the front lines of treating COVID-19 patients, pivoting from in-person to virtual care, or even having to shutter their practices, physicians faced an onslaught of crises, while political tensions, social unrest, and environmental concerns probably affected their lives outside of medicine.

In this year's report, Medscape explores how cardiologists are coping with burnout, maintaining personal wellness, and viewing their workplaces and their futures amid the pandemic. More than 12,000 physicians in over 29 specialties responded to our survey.

(Note: Some totals in this presentation do not equal 100% due to rounding.)

2 of 29

Scroll

Medscape Cardiologist Lifestyle, Happiness & Burnout Report 2021

Keith L. Martin; Mary Lyn Koval | February 19, 2021 | Contributor Information

Cardiologists largely reported being happy outside of work prior to COVID-19 affecting everyday living in March 2020. Eighty percent said they were somewhat or very happy then, similar to the percentage (82%) of physicians overall. Endocrinologists and public health and preventive medicine physicians were ranked highest on happiness outside of work before the pandemic; infectious disease physicians ranked lowest.

3 of 29

Scroll

Medscape Cardiologist Lifestyle, Happiness & Burnout Report 2021

Keith L. Martin; Mary Lyn Koval | February 19, 2021 | Contributor Information

As the pandemic has worn on, feelings have shifted, showing signs of strain on the healthcare industry and its doctors. Similar to physicians overall (58%), just over half (55%) of cardiologists say they are now very or somewhat happy outside of work. Perhaps not surprising given the specific challenges around COVID-19, infectious disease physicians (45%), pulmonologists (47%), rheumatologists (49%), and intensivists (49%) currently rank lowest in happiness outside of work.

4 of 29

Scroll

Medscape Cardiologist Lifestyle, Happiness & Burnout Report 2021

Keith L. Martin; Mary Lyn Koval | February 19, 2021 | Contributor Information

The percentage of cardiologists who said they were either burned out or both burned out and depressed is similar to that in last year's report (43% vs 44%).

5 of 29

Scroll

Medscape Cardiologist Lifestyle, Happiness & Burnout Report 2021

Keith L. Martin; Mary Lyn Koval | February 19, 2021 | Contributor Information

About two thirds of cardiologist respondents who reported burnout consider it serious enough to have at least a moderate impact on their lives. Around one tenth find it so severe that they are thinking of leaving medicine altogether, an unexpected outcome after having spent so many years in training to become a physician.

6 of 29

Scroll

Medscape Cardiologist Lifestyle, Happiness & Burnout Report 2021

Keith L. Martin; Mary Lyn Koval | February 19, 2021 | Contributor Information

The large majority of burned-out cardiologists felt that way even before the pandemic began.

7 of 29

Scroll

Medscape Cardiologist Lifestyle, Happiness & Burnout Report 2021

Keith L. Martin; Mary Lyn Koval | February 19, 2021 | Contributor Information

About half of cardiologists who reported burnout pointed to the growing number of bureaucratic tasks as the leading contributor; a similar proportion said lack of respect from colleagues in the workplace is a factor. (Respondents could choose more than one answer.)

8 of 29

Scroll

Medscape Cardiologist Lifestyle, Happiness & Burnout Report 2021

Keith L. Martin; Mary Lyn Koval | February 19, 2021 | Contributor Information

Cardiologists' top tactic (56%) for dealing with burnout is exercise, which is also the most popular choice (48%) among physicians overall. A lesser percentage (46%) of cardiologists isolate themselves from others, reflecting a mix of positive and negative coping behaviors among physicians. (Respondents could choose more than one answer.)

9 of 29

Scroll

Medscape Cardiologist Lifestyle, Happiness & Burnout Report 2021

Keith L. Martin; Mary Lyn Koval | February 19, 2021 | Contributor Information

The large majority (80%) of depressed and/or burned-out cardiologists plan to forego professional care for the problem. Thirteen percent are seeking help now or plan to do so.

10 of 29

Scroll

Medscape Cardiologist Lifestyle, Happiness & Burnout Report 2021

Keith L. Martin; Mary Lyn Koval | February 19, 2021 | Contributor Information

Feeling that they could deal with the problem a different way and considering their symptoms not severe enough are top reasons why cardiologists haven't sought professional help for their burnout and/or depression. (Respondents could choose more than one answer.)

11 of 29

Scroll

Medscape Cardiologist Lifestyle, Happiness & Burnout Report 2021

Keith L. Martin; Mary Lyn Koval | February 19, 2021 | Contributor Information

A tenth of cardiologists who are burned out, depressed, or both said they have had thoughts of suicide.

Alarmingly, our survey showed that 3% of burned-out and/or depressed cardiologists have made suicide attempts. Among such physicians overall, 1% said they have attempted suicide.

"Anyone who has made a suicide attempt is at greater risk at some point of completing the act," said Carol Bernstein, MD, a psychiatrist at Montefiore Medical Center in the Bronx, New York.

One physician who admitted to having had suicidal thoughts said, "I yell all the time. I am angry and frustrated all the time. I think about quitting all the time. ... No one [in my organization] cares about doing the right things for patients as much as I do."

12 of 29

Scroll

Medscape Cardiologist Lifestyle, Happiness & Burnout Report 2021

Keith L. Martin; Mary Lyn Koval | February 19, 2021 | Contributor Information

Work-life balance is the most pressing workplace issue for half of cardiologists. Similarly, among physicians overall, 46% said work-life balance is their top concern.

13 of 29

Scroll

Medscape Cardiologist Lifestyle, Happiness & Burnout Report 2021

Keith L. Martin; Mary Lyn Koval | February 19, 2021 | Contributor Information

Three quarters of cardiologists have some degree of anxiety about their future, given COVID-19 — about the same proportion as for physicians overall (77%). However, The U.S. National Pandemic Emotional Impact Report, a project spearheaded by investigators at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill and Harvard Medical School, found that 23% of Americans surveyed had no fear of a bleaker future.

"This speaks to a fundamentally positive attitude toward life, even in a pandemic, and echoes the research on resilience in physicians," said Michael F. Myers, MD, a specialist in physician health and professor of clinical psychiatry at SUNY Downstate Health Sciences University in Brooklyn, New York. "Physicians who are not paralyzed by anxiety are in a good position to help their patients because they can be hopeful, empathic, and calming."

14 of 29

Scroll

Medscape Cardiologist Lifestyle, Happiness & Burnout Report 2021

Keith L. Martin; Mary Lyn Koval | February 19, 2021 | Contributor Information

Fifty-two percent of cardiologists would sacrifice some of their salary for a better home life, a somewhat greater percentage than that of physicians overall (47%).

15 of 29

Scroll

Medscape Cardiologist Lifestyle, Happiness & Burnout Report 2021

Keith L. Martin; Mary Lyn Koval | February 19, 2021 | Contributor Information

About a third (32%) of cardiologists generally make time to focus on their own well-being, roughly the same proportion as for physicians overall (35%).

16 of 29

Scroll

Medscape Cardiologist Lifestyle, Happiness & Burnout Report 2021

Keith L. Martin; Mary Lyn Koval | February 19, 2021 | Contributor Information

About three quarters (77%) of cardiologists say they exercise two or more times per week, a somewhat greater proportion than that of physicians overall (70%).

In March 2020, the World Health Organization recommended 150 minutes of moderate-intensity or 75 minutes of vigorous-intensity physical activity for adults, or a combination of both. The group noted that this is for those in self-quarantine without any symptoms or diagnosis of acute respiratory illness.

17 of 29

Scroll

Medscape Cardiologist Lifestyle, Happiness & Burnout Report 2021

Keith L. Martin; Mary Lyn Koval | February 19, 2021 | Contributor Information

Twenty-three percent of cardiologists have five or more drinks per week. The same percentage said they do not consume alcohol at all.

Men should not exceed 14 drinks per week and women seven per week, according to the National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism.

18 of 29

Scroll

Medscape Cardiologist Lifestyle, Happiness & Burnout Report 2021

Keith L. Martin; Mary Lyn Koval | February 19, 2021 | Contributor Information

BMW and Toyota are among the most popular cars among cardiologists. Physicians overall favored Toyota, Honda, and BMW. Respondents were allowed to choose as many makes as applied.

19 of 29

Scroll

Medscape Cardiologist Lifestyle, Happiness & Burnout Report 2021

Keith L. Martin; Mary Lyn Koval | February 19, 2021 | Contributor Information

Forty-five percent of cardiologists take 3-4 weeks of vacation per year, while 26% take 5 or more weeks. This is similar to the findings of our 2020 report.

20 of 29

Scroll

Medscape Cardiologist Lifestyle, Happiness & Burnout Report 2021

Keith L. Martin; Mary Lyn Koval | February 19, 2021 | Contributor Information

Nearly half of cardiologists are currently trying to lose weight, with about a third working to maintain their current weight — no easy task during the pandemic.

21 of 29

Scroll

Medscape Cardiologist Lifestyle, Happiness & Burnout Report 2021

Keith L. Martin; Mary Lyn Koval | February 19, 2021 | Contributor Information

The large majority of cardiologists are currently in a committed relationship, with 90% either married or living with a partner. A somewhat lesser percentage (85%) of physicians overall report being in such a relationship.

22 of 29

Scroll

Medscape Cardiologist Lifestyle, Happiness & Burnout Report 2021

Keith L. Martin; Mary Lyn Koval | February 19, 2021 | Contributor Information

Eighty-six percent of cardiologists say their marriages are very good or good, similar to the 83% who described their marriages that way in last year's report.

Both this year and last, 85% of physicians overall said their marriages were very good or good.

23 of 29

Scroll

Medscape Cardiologist Lifestyle, Happiness & Burnout Report 2021

Keith L. Martin; Mary Lyn Koval | February 19, 2021 | Contributor Information

Among cardiologists who are married or living with a partner, nearly half are with someone in the medical field. Similarly, among all such physicians, a notable proportion have a spouse or partner who works in healthcare.

24 of 29

Scroll

Medscape Cardiologist Lifestyle, Happiness & Burnout Report 2021

Keith L. Martin; Mary Lyn Koval | February 19, 2021 | Contributor Information

Two thirds of cardiologists spend up to 10 hours per week online for personal use.

25 of 29

Scroll

Medscape Cardiologist Lifestyle, Happiness & Burnout Report 2021

Keith L. Martin; Mary Lyn Koval | February 19, 2021 | Contributor Information

A large majority (79%) of cardiologists are online for work for up to 10 hours per week. One could assume that that will grow with the rise of telemedicine due to the pandemic. Even when their personal use and professional use are combined, on average, cardiologists spend far less time online than the nearly 7 hours per day of the average internet user, as reported by Hootsuite and We Are Social.

26 of 29

Scroll

Medscape Cardiologist Lifestyle, Happiness & Burnout Report 2021

Keith L. Martin; Mary Lyn Koval | February 19, 2021 | Contributor Information

27 of 29

Scroll

Medscape Cardiologist Lifestyle, Happiness & Burnout Report 2021

Keith L. Martin; Mary Lyn Koval | February 19, 2021 | Contributor Information

28 of 29

Scroll

Medscape Cardiologist Lifestyle, Happiness & Burnout Report 2021

Keith L. Martin; Mary Lyn Koval | February 19, 2021 | Contributor Information

29 of 29

Related Content on Medscape

Start
 

Medscape Physician Lifestyle & Happiness Report 2021

More than 12,000 physicians in various specialties told Medscape about their lives before and during the global pandemic.Medscape Features Slideshow, Jan 2021
All Slideshows
1 26 Next