As a physician, you've dedicated your career to caring for your patients' health and well-being. With the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic, patients' health care needs have spiraled and the hazards of providing that care have intensified. Despite this, you rose to the challenge. While you continue to work on the front lines of a global pandemic, you’re now preparing to take your place at the forefront of a massive vaccination initiative.
You've shouldered an incomprehensible amount of stress and grief. It's more important than ever before that you care for your own well-being, and the AAFP is here to support you.
Physician Health First was created to help you prioritize your well-being and stay passionate about your purpose. This first-of-its-kind initiative offers a holistic view of the many factors that impact the well-being and professional satisfaction of family physicians.
Assess your well-being anonymously, develop a plan that meets your well-being goals, explore a vast collection of resources, and receive support as you build positive well-being habits.
If you are having suicidal thoughts and need emergency help, call 911 or (800) 273-8255 immediately.
Free Physician Support Line
The Physician Support Line is a national and confidential support line service made up of 600+ volunteer psychiatrists who offer peer support for physician colleagues during the epidemic. Open 7 days a week; no appointment is necessary. Call 1-888-409-0141.
National Suicide Prevention Lifeline
The National Suicide Prevention Lifeline provides 24/7, free and confidential support for people in distress, prevention and crises resources, and best practices for professionals. Call the direct line at 1-800-273-8255.
Find Support Specific to Healthcare Workers
Visit the American Foundation for Suicide Prevention Healthcare workers page for more detailed support and resources related to health care professional burnout, depression, and suicide prevention.
Crisis Text Line
Get support the Crisis Text Line. Text HOME to 741741 (US and Canada) to connect with a Crisis Counselor for free.
Free Therapy for COVID-19 Frontline Clinicians
This online teletherapy program matches volunteer therapists to frontline healthcare workers.
Manage Stress and Anxiety
The AAFP offers a list of resources to help you, your family, your patients, and your team manage stress during this pandemic.
Connect with Fellow Physicians
PeerRxMed™ is a free, peer-supported program designed to help physicians and others on the care team move toward thriving both personally and professionally.
Share Your Burden of Grief and Find Joy on the Other Side
Like so many physicians, Lalita Abhyankar, M.D., M.H.S., has experienced grief on an unprecedented scale this past year. In this Fresh Perspectives blog post, she shares how she has come to acknowledge her grief and use it to begin healing.
4 Quick Stress Management Tips
Physicians must devote special attention to self-care during times of crisis. You can support your own well-being with the “Four principles for handling stress during a crisis.”
Optimize Your Mental Health
Receive advice on how to optimize your mental health during the COVID-19 pandemic from the American Family Physician Community Blog.
Nurture Your Well-being
Dr. Kimberly Becher shares why patient care during COVID-19 shouldn't imperil your well-being in her Fresh Perspectives blog.
Free Writing Workshops for Health Care Workers and First Responders to Process COVID-19 Experiences
If speaking your COVID-19 experience feels too daunting, try writing. The Things They Carry Project is offering free writing workshops to help health care workers and first responders process traumatic memories and make sense of their experiences. Schedule a workshop today.
Watch the 1/13 Town Hall, "Your Feelings are Real: Navigating Grief, Anger, Fear, Guilt, and Moral Injury"
During the Town Hall, family physicians Kyle Jones, MD, of Salt Lake City, and Lalita Abhyankar, MD, MHS, of New York City, joined AAFP President Ada Stewart, MD, of Columbia, S.C., and Senior Vice President of Research, Science and Health of the Public Julie Wood, MD, MPH, to discuss the implications of the pandemic on family physician well-being, recognizing and managing secondary grief, and identifying and utilizing resources to support family physician mental health and well-being during the pandemic and beyond. Watch the Town Hall on demand.
Approved for 1 AAFP Prescribed Credit.
Earn CME for Physician Well-Being during Pandemic
This course, Physician Well-being in the Time of the Pandemic (session 4 of Pandemic Self-Study Package: COVID-19), offers skill-building to alleviate the stress and cope with the trauma experienced while providing care to patients.
Webcast: Managing the COVID-19 Crisis
Find out how you can care for the emotional health of all stakeholders in patient care (including yourself) with the free on-demand webinar “Maintaining the Emotional Health of You, Your Team, and Your Patients.”
Speaker: Psychologist Nancy Ruddy, PhD | Approved for 1 AAFP Prescribed Credit.
Looking for more? View all CME activities on physician well-being.
Resources to Support Your Family
We know our members need resources to support their families as they themselves are working in patient care settings. This list of resources can help with child care while most schools and daycares are closed, and offers a set of online resources to support the education and entertainment of kids at home.
Ways to Reduce Home Exposure Risks
The new Protecting the Health of Your Household document provides guidance on limiting the risk to your family when you return home at the end of your workday.