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Wellness Section Newsletter - Spring 2017

Our Journey Continues: At The Stop Ahead, You are Entering the Wellness Zone

Featuring the Health Promoting Work Systems Series by Katherine Sanders, PhD

Co-Editors' Note

Levin_2017MatthewWong_2017_HSIn this March issue, our Section Chair will be updating you on a number of initiatives that our section has been working on, along with some new information. 

Spring time means warmer weather, fresh air, and a sense of renewal. This edition of the Wellness Section Newsletter hopefully will help you with some mental and emotional spring-cleaning. We’re happy to include a wonderful piece by Dr. H. S. Moffic, who provides the unique perspective of a psychiatrist’s point of view into burnout. We also have a fantastic story by one of our own emergency physician colleagues, Dr. Charmaine Gregory, who bravely tells her tale of personal recovery from burnout. If either piece inspires you too, we’re actively soliciting submissions and would love to provide a larger platform for you to be heard. 

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Physician Wellness and Resiliency Summit Report

Wellness Summit4The inaugural Emergency Medicine Wellness & Resiliency Summit was held at the headquarters of the American College of Emergency Physicians, February 9 -10, 2017. Every emergency medicine organization was represented. Over the course of two days we brainstormed, collaborated, reviewed literature and debated through our robust discussion of the unique stressors of emergency medicine and innovative approaches for emergency physician wellness.

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Wellness Week Report from Drexel Emergency Medicine Residency

Drexel U

Here at Drexel University in Philadelphia our residents organized a Philly Scavenger hunt. Teams of 4-5 residents headed out into the city to take pictures of their group at various Philly landmarks. It was capped off with a pizza party and Starbuck's prizes for the winners back in our department at Hahnemann University Hospital. 

A great time was had by all.  

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Wellness Week Report from Dr. Randy Levin

Remember the Calling: 
Though retired from an active clinical emergency medicine practice, I am still a physician “healer.” To continue to build my resiliency, for the past 12 years since my burnout I have found that listening to an audio CD, Care for the Journey Part 13, allows me to stay reconnected to my healing inner-spirit, to feel the “warmth” of the “calling,” as my journey continues to be involved in wellness for the system and colleagues. During this past ACEP Wellness Week, I spent extra time meditating to the messages and music on the CD.

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Health Promoting Work Systems Series

Figure2_SandersThe research linking work system design with mental and physical health outcomes is well established. We just need to find some common understandings in order to address it effectively. 

Editor’s Note: At times, as we move along our pathways towards creating and maintaining Wellness among our colleagues, it may feel as if there is no one else out there who understands the significance of our endeavors. We may feel alone and lacking in leadership skills, or at times, we may feel troubled by the “brick walls” which we encounter. We may even run the risk of developing a “learned helplessness” during our attempts to maintain wellness and “heal” those systemic environments in which we work every day. But let me assure you, we are not alone, for others also benefit from the discussions and the work which we undertake everyday while championing for both wellness and health-promoting work environments. To help our members develop the leadership skills to drawn upon, we are offering a 3-part series, by Katherine Sanders, PhD, to develop those skills to be able to drawn upon, while championing for and partnering with system leadership in creating systemic health-promoting work environments. The following is the first in the series.

- Dr. R. Levin

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Annotated Articles From Wellness Week

Wellness Week

Did you miss the ACEP Wellness Week daily email messages?  We compiled the series into one document so you can access tips, resources and success stories to keep you motivated year round! 

Learn more about ACEP's 2017 Wellness Week.  

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Reminder for 2017 ACEP Scientific Assembly

The ACEP Scientific Assembly this year is in Washington, DC, and it promises to be better than ever. Besides stopping by and partaking of the activities, if you’re interested in helping set up and organize the proceedings, please email the Well-being Committee Chair, Dr. Rita Manfredi to get involved!

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Remarks From the Section Chair

PamelaRoss_2017_HS“The secret of change is to focus all of your energy, not on fighting the old, but on building the new.” – Socrates

Wellness Section activity has been robust since my last communication. The second annual Emergency Medicine Wellness Week was a success and we encourage you to continue to share your wellness stories/videos. Your words and your experience matter – and have healing potential for others. 

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Letter to the Wellness Section and ACEP: A psychiatrist gives thanks to emergency physicians

No, this isn’t a thank you note for saving my life, though many years back you did successfully address the fear that I was dying when it turned out that I had kidney stones. Perhaps my field has reciprocated in kind at times, and helped prevent a suicide in an emergency physician. But this newer story is about something else.

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Wellness Week 2017 for Henry Ford Wyandotte Hospital Residents

Greetings from Henry Ford Wyandotte Hospital in Wyandotte, Michigan! Our residents celebrated Emergency Medicine Wellness Week for the first time, and we had a blast! The entire week was filled with activities, including: daily wellness tips posted in the resident break room (most from the daily ACEP wellness emails!), raffle prizes (such as home fitness equipment and healthy snack box subscriptions), and nutritious breakfast food at our weekly educational conference.

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Call for Newsletter Content Submissions

The Wellness Section newsletter is always accepting new written pieces, inspirational photographs, or other forms of expression that inspire you or may inspire others. Please send them to Dr. Matthew Wong or Dr. Randy Levin.

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Stories of Inspirational Journeys: “Reclaiming the Passion to Serve”

The altruist in me was having a difficult time reconciling with the slow creep of my loss of passion to serve and succor. How did this happen? Like every other insidious process that infiltrates and consumes, my lost love occurred over time and was an accumulation of numerous events. When you look at yourself in the mirror everyday, it is very difficult to see the metamorphosis occurring. I became a real life example of the fact that small things done daily have a compound effect.

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Wellness Resources

1. K. Sanders, PhD article - referenced article / book

a. Building Healthy Workplaces: What We Know So Far, Kelloway, E Kevin; Day, Arla L, Canadian Journal of Behavioural Science; Oct 2005; 37, 4; ProQuest Research Library pgs. 223 -235
b. Workplace Well-being – How to Build Psychologically Healthy Workplaces, Wiley Blackwell ISBN-13: 978-1118469460 / ISBN-10: 1118469461

2. CDs

a. Care for the Journey: Volume 1, Audio CD By Michael Stillwater and Gary Malkin

3. Books

a. The Resilient Practitioner – Burnout and Compassion Fatigue Prevention and Self-Care Strategies for the Helping Professions – Third Edition, Thomas M. Skovholt and Michelle Trotter-Mathison, 2016

4. Emotional Intelligence: The New Physician Workforce: Three Steps to Ensure Alignment, Performance and Career Satisfaction - Wellness Section Newsletter, March 2014

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