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Faculty Development: Self Care for Faculty

Well-Being as a Competency

"Psychological, emotional, and physical well-being are critical in the development of the competent, caring, and resilient physician and require proactive attention to life inside and outside of medicine. Well-being requires that physicians retain the joy in medicine while managing their own real-life stresses. Self-care and responsibility to support other members of the health care team are important components of professionalism; they are also skills that must be modeled, learned, and nurtured in the context of other aspects of residency training. Residents and faculty members are at risk for burnout and depression. Programs, in partnership with their Sponsoring Institutions, have the same responsibility to address well-being as other aspects of resident competence. Physicians and all members of the health care team share responsibility for the well-being of each other. For example, a culture which encourages covering for colleagues after an illness without the expectation of reciprocity reflects the ideal of professionalism. A positive culture in a clinical learning environment models constructive behaviors, and prepares residents with the skills and attitudes needed to thrive throughout their careers."

(ACGME 2018)


Self Care Planning

"A self-care plan is a thoughtfully constructed and intentionally engaged guide (wellness curriculum) to promote our health and wellbeing." A self-care plan takes the concept of being a life-long learner and engages the person in building a curriculum of knowledge, skills and attitudes to support their wellbeing.  The RWBC Website topic page addresses the attitudinal and knowledge components of the self-care competency (knowledge, skills and attitudes).

In a recent ACGME survey of residents, 88% reported working with a faculty member in whom they observed signs of burnout. Our residents see the impact of the stresses of practice on us. What they also need to see in us are our efforts to thoughtfully and intentionally take care of ourselves. this topic page provides a quick read on the attitudes and knowledge to support your self-care planning. Please review it, consider items to engage and discuss this work with your residents.


Retiring Well

Your work with our residents and students is vital. Even more so as the nation encounters health care work force shortages. So why would we address retirement as a faculty development topic?  Retiring well includes the opportunity to shift how we continue to engage with residents and students, not abruptly end the involvement. A MCHS Special Grand Rounds occurred in September 2021 on retiring well. That presentation included a survey of our medical staff on how they consider retirement. Many noted they wished to remain involved with teaching, mentoring and research in a voluntary role after they closed their clinical careers. The presentation, linked here provides practical information on the challenges, opportunities and benefits of thoughtfully approaching the decision to retire and the ways you can remain involved with medical education.

MCHS Ethics Committee: Speaker Series

MCHS Ethics Committee  Educational Series
The Ethics Committee is comprised of multi-disciplinary representatives whose purpose is to focus on and address clinical ethics issues. The Ethics Committee functions as a resource for education and consultation, as well as formulation and implementation of policies/procedures dealing with clinical ethical issues.

Self Care Tools

This topic page provides a detailed review of the the skills in self-care planning and a model of how those could occur through the course of the day. Included is an 18 minute video of  practical tools for faculty which they can use during a typical day.

Burn Out, Depression, Suicide

Per the ACGME, "Physicians and all members of the health care team share responsibility for the well-being of each other." This requires us to know the warning signs for when we are not doing well and to know the tools we can use to address this with our residents and other team members. this knowledge and the tools can be used for our own self-care when we are burnt out, depressed of having suicidal thoughts and in how we attend to our residents.

Burnout: MCHS Division of Education Grand Rounds hosted a special presentation on burnout in 2022. It included information on burnout and a conversation with a physician who experienced burn out. Dr. Kristin Whitaker shared her experience of burnout, how it felt, how it showed up in the exam room and how it began to affect her views on her career. We invite you to watch the conversation, consider how it may apply to you and what you can do. It's a real world message of hope.  The full Grand Rounds presentation includes important information on burnout (symptoms, impact, solutions resources) and is available here.

Here is the link to the Resident Well-being Committee's website topic page on burnout. It provides quick read resources about burnout signs and what to do. 

Depression: Here is the link to the Resident Well-Being Committee's website topic page on depression. It provides quick read resources about depression and what to do.

Suicide: Physicians are the highest risk group of any profession for dying from suicide. As a faculty member, it is very likely you have worked with residents who had suicidal thoughts and you did not know that. As our medical culture recognizes that physicians are one of the highest risk groups for dying from suicide, the culture is now changing. We are learning about suicide, the warning signs and the tools to use when we have suicidal thoughts or a colleague, resident or other team member has such thoughts. We are making it ok to admit our struggles and get the same help we would wish for our patients.  On September 18, 2019 MCHS held a special Grand Rounds for the National Physician Suicide Awareness Day. Below is a resource email we sent to follow-up that presentation. It includes links to the presentation and to specific tools we want all our faculty to know so that they can effectively engage the ACGME stated responsibility to self-care and support to each other.

Here's the email:

This is a short summary of the National Physician Suicide Awareness (NPSA) Grand Rounds on Sept. 18, 2019. While NPSA is specifically for physicians, the points made and resources available are important for all of us.

In the week after our presentation, several of you told us about colleagues in other medical centers who experienced a death from suicide in their system that week.

A painful reminder that this is real and everyone and every system is at risk.  Please share this email with anyone you think may be helped by seeing this.


The more we share and talk about this, the more we change the culture to make it ok to ask, to talk and to get help.


Critical points from our presentation were:

-Physicians are the highest risk group of any profession for dying from suicide

-Physicians die from suicide at higher rates than the general public

-There are a number of barriers to asking for help AND those are changing. The culture of medicine is changing to make it ok to talk, to ask, to get help.

-Distress leads to cognitive narrowing which can mislead a physician into thinking that suicide is the logical, only, thing they can do.

-Suicide is not a selfish act. Suicide is a loss of Self act.

-When you see warning signs in others, ASK!  Do not accept the answer “I’m fine” (Feelings Inside Not Expressed). Ask again and say “No. I really mean it. How are you doing?” And then wait and listen.

-When you notice warning signs in yourself, TALK!  Talk to anyone. Including::

            The Physician and Allied Provider Health Committee link  

            The Resident Wellbeing Committee link  

            MCHS Behavioral Health ext 75744

            MCHS EAP link 



Here is the video of the Grand Rounds.

We made it into a You Tube so you can share it with anyone- please do so.


Here is the 4 minute video from the Grand Rounds that identifies warning signs and what to say and not say when you see warning signs.



Here is a 4 minute video that shows what it can look like when you see the warning signs and you ask your colleague how they are really doing. The asking leads to critical support and connection to help. It’s a very real video. Notice the warning signs in the colleague and the power of asking. For faculty, here is a 7 minute MCHS video production on how an attending can ask a resident about mood concerns and guide them into getting help. The video is direct, clear and provides powerful modeling for this critical attending behavior. 


Here is the link to info on the My3 app.

Please install this now on your phone and encourage your colleagues and your patients to put it on their phones. The key feature is its simplicity. Tap once to open the app. Tap  a second time on the “Get Help Now” and you immediately have someone at the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline to talk with.


If you or your patients prefer to text  rather than call someone,  contact 741741 and Text HOME. It’s  the Crisis Text Line 


Together we help each other. Together we help ourselves. Together we change the culture.


And as a another sign of the support for this initiative, on October 16th 2019, CCOLT was trained in the use of Question, Persuade, Refer (QPR), an evidence based practice in suicide prevention.  QPR has been and will continue to be taught to us in MCHS to help us notice, ask and support each other.

Here is info about QPR  



Questions or Suggestions for Faculty Development or the Website?

Mark Ridder, M.D.                   Division of Education Faculty Development Lead