According to a study published online Feb. 25 in the Mayo Clinic Proceedings, primary care physician (PCP) turnover is costly, resulting in nearly $979 million in extra health care expenditures per year, with a significant percentage of this spending owing to PCP burnout-related turnover.
Christine A. Sinsky, M.D., and colleagues from the American Medical Association in Chicago calculated the extra health-care costs associated with overall and burnout-specific PCP turnover.
Data on burnout and the intention to quit one’s current practice within two years were acquired from a cross-sectional survey of U.S. physicians conducted between Oct. 12, 2017, and March 15, 2018, to estimate excess expenditures associated to PCP turnover owing to burnout.
PCP turnover cost public and private payers a total of $979 million in extra health care spending each year, according to the researchers. Burnout-related turnover in the PCP industry cost $260 million.
“While primary care physician turnover is costly to both public and private payers, there is an opportunity to reduce wasteful health-care spending by lowering burnout-related turnover,” Sinsky said in a statement.
“Physician burnout is preventable, and payers, health-care organizations, and others all have a vested interest in reducing physician burnout.”
Several authors are the inventors of instruments, including the Well-being Index instruments, which are owned by Mayo Clinic.