Taking Action Against Clinician Burnout: A Systems Approach to Professional Well-Being

Washington (DC): National Academies Press (US); 2019 Oct 23.


Patient-centered, high-quality health care relies on the well-being, health, and safety of health care clinicians. However, alarmingly high rates of clinician burnout in the United States are detrimental to the quality of care being provided, harmful to individuals in the workforce, and costly. It is important to take a systemic approach to address burnout that focuses on the structure, organization, and culture of health care. Taking Action Against Clinician Burnout: A Systems Approach to Professional Well-Being builds upon two groundbreaking reports from the past twenty years, To Err Is Human: Building a Safer Health System and Crossing the Quality Chasm: A New Health System for the 21st Century, which both called attention to the issues around patient safety and quality of care. This report explores the extent, consequences, and contributing factors of clinician burnout and provides a framework for a systems approach to clinician burnout and professional well-being, a research agenda to advance clinician well-being, and recommendations for the field.

Publication types

  • Review

Grant support

This activity was supported by contracts between the National Academy of Sciences and Accreditation Council for Graduate Medical Education, American College of Occupational and Environmental Medicine, American Hospital Association, Arnold P. Gold Foundation, Association of American Medical Colleges, BJC HealthCare, Cedars-Sinai Medical Center, The Doctors Company Foundation, Duke University Hospital, Gordon and Betty Moore Foundation, Johns Hopkins Health System, Josiah Macy Jr. Foundation, Keck School of Medicine of the University of Southern California, Medical College of Wisconsin, Montefiore Medicine, The Mont Fund, The Ohio State University, The State University of New York System, Tulane University, University of Florida, University of Illinois Hospital and Health Sciences System, University of Massachusetts Medical School, University of Michigan, University of New Mexico Health Sciences Center, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, University of Utah Health, University of Virginia Medical Center, University of Virginia School of Medicine, Vanderbilt University Medical Center, Washington University School of Medicine, Yale New Haven Health System, and Yale School of Medicine. Any opinions, findings, conclusions, or recommendations expressed in this publication do not necessarily reflect the views of any organization or agency that provided support for the project.