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Burnout could affect physicians' ability to care for patients

Doctors in New York City and beyond have an important job to do. However, a survey of more than 7,000 doctors from across the country shows that more than four out of 10 experience burnout.

This kind of new is alarming because research has shown that doctors who experience burnout are more likely to make errors.

"This high rate of burnout has consequences not only for the individual physicians, but also for the patients they are caring for," the physician who led the survey said.

The survey results were based on questionnaires that thousands of physicians filled out to find out more about their work-life balance. Nearly 40 percent of the physicians were determined to have high emotional exhaustion scores. Thirty percent also had high depersonalization scores.

Doctor errors can lead to life-altering complications. People who are harmed due to a medical error may need further treatment. Sadly, some medical errors result in fatal injuries.

Doctors should be doing all that they can to prevent errors. Sadly, instances of medical malpractice occur all too frequently in hospitals in New York City and beyond.

Being the victim of medical malpractice can be frightening. In addition to further complications, patients may also experienced financial hardships. Medical bills may become overwhelming, especially if people are unable to work.

Fortunately, patients who are harmed due to doctor error have legal options to consider. They may pursue a medical malpractice lawsuit. The compensation that is obtained through a lawsuit can be put towards medical bills and to make up for lost wages. It may also provide patients with a sense of justice.

Source: Reuters, "Nearly half of U.S. doctors struggling with burnout," Frederik Joelving, Aug. 20, 2012

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