NASPAG Statement on Wellness 

Created by Rachel Casey, MD, Nichole Tyson, MD
In collaboration with NASPAG Advocacy Committee Members: Martin Fisher MD, Shaketha Gray MD, Megan Harrison MD, Andrea Huneeus MD MPH, Susan Kaufman DO, Kate McCracken MD, Julie Strickland

NASPAG recognizes the increased risk of physician burnout amidst the COVID19 Pandemic and seeks to emphasize strategies to improve coping, wellbeing and resilience as we work through this together. 

In recent years, physician burnout has been recognized as a crisis in medicine. Physician burnout has been described as a triad of emotional exhaustion, depersonalization and low sense of personal accomplishment related to one’s work.1 Frequently, physician burnout exists on a continuum (figure 1). Without prevention or intervention, burnout contributes to depression and even, suicide. An estimated 300 physicians die by suicide in the US per year.2   The global pandemic has interfered on many levels with our professional and personal lives, posing potentially even higher risk for physician burnout. It is imperative we recognize this and pay close attention to care for ourselves to be able to effectively take care of others.

Figure 1: Continuum of stress (Adapted from Dissanaike) 3

Wellness is an active process through which people become aware and make choices toward a more successful existence.4 Wellness is an individual pursuit that can be significantly influenced by our surroundings and requires an active process of making choices that lead to wellness.5 Wellness has been described in dimensions (Figure 2).

Figure 2: Dimensions of Wellness


 There are often many outside circumstances we cannot control and there are choices that may improve certain dimensions of wellness. In these times of crisis, it is extremely important that we come together as a community and promote open conversations about our mental health and well-being. Some easy steps can include: asking a colleague how s/he is doing. Share your own experiences and seek out support from those close to you. Never hesitate to seek counseling. We recommend these modalities of support to our patients, so we should not hesitate to heed that advice for ourselves.


As we navigate through this complex time, please know that your NASPAG community is here as a safe space and your support system. Our NASPAG community spans the globe and remains a stable force during this time of uncertainty. Join us to support each other in efforts to proactively manage our own wellbeing and find joy and balance in our lives. Through a pursuit of wellness, even during a global pandemic, we can prosper as we continue our NASPAG mission to provide multidisciplinary leadership in education, research and gynecologic care to improve the reproductive health of youth.


1. Maslach C, Jackson S, Leiter M. Maslach Burnout Inventory Manual 3rd ed. Paolo Alto, CA: Consulting

Psychologists Press; 1996.

2. American Foundation for Suicide Prevention. Commitment Statement.

3. Dissanaike S. How to prevent burnout (maybe). Am J Surg 2016;212:1251-5,

4. National Wellness Institute. The Six Dimensions of Wellness. Available at: Accessed July 5, 2020.

5. Global Wellness Institute. Wellness Definitions: Wellness Defined. Available at: Accessed July 5, 2020

Resource List


  • American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists
  1. Physician Wellness Toolkit
  2. Wellness References: Inspiring and Educational Media and Scientific Literature
  3. Curricula and Training
  4. Tools to Assess Wellness
  • American Academy of Pediatrics
  1. Physician Health and Wellness
  2. Individual Resilience
  3. Burnout
  4. Society of Adolescent Health and Medicine
  • Books
    1. Bouncing Back: Rewiring Your Brain for Maximum Resilience and Well-Being
    2. Trauma Stewardship: An Everyday Guide to Caring for Self While Caring for Others