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2016 ACGME Symposium on Physician Well-Being

The ACGME Second Symposium on Physician Well-Being: Commitment to Change


The ACGME convened its second Symposium on Physician Well-Being: Commitment to Change at its Chicago headquarters on November 29, bringing together 150 stakeholders from inside and outside the medical continuum, including board members, administration, staff, health care professionals and leaders, friends and family of physicians, and learners.

Timothy Brigham, MDiv, PhD, and Carol Bernstein, MD, co-chairs of the ACGME Task Force on Physician Well-Being, welcomed attendees and shared the goals for the Symposium:

  • Develop a concrete action plan to address the issue of physician well-being for:
  • - Programs/Systems
    - Learners/Faculty Members
  • Continue the national dialogue and forge collaborations among stakeholders to effect positive transformational change for physician well-being
  • Provide guidance to the ACGME on how best to utilize its unique “levers of influence” to effect positive transformational change
  • Promote a scholarly approach to well-being interventions and innovations

ACGME CEO Thomas J. Nasca, MD, MACP, expressed his personal and professional commitment to addressing the issue of physician well-being and encouraged the group to work together to find solutions. He noted,

we don’t have all the answers, but we need to ask the right questions.

Over the next two days, the highly energized group did just that: they asked questions, shared ideas, and challenged one another to work within their organizations and spheres of influence to make physician well-being a priority.


Symposium Presentations (Nov 2016)

Developing Implementing and Evaluating a Well-Being Initiative - Three Examples
Saadia Akhtar, MD
Mount Sinai Beth Israel
Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai New York

The ACGME Second Symposium on Physician Well-Being: Commitment to Change
Timothy P. Brigham, MDiv, PhD

Applying the Science of Well-Being to Develop Resilience
Derrick Carpenter, MAPP
University of Pennsylvania

A Decade of Caring for Physicians in Training and Practice
Sydney Ey, Ph.D.
OHSU Resident and Faculty Wellness Program

Wellness Initiatives Stanford Health Care & Stanford Children’s Health
Laurence Katznelson, MD
Stanford University School of Medicine

Pathways to Well-Being in the Clinical Learning Environment
Kevin B. Weiss, MD

Using the Science of Well-Being to Help Physicians Flourish
James O. Pawelski
University of Pennsylvania

The Learning and Working Environment
Rowen K. Zetterman, MD, MACP, MACG
University of Nebraska Medical Center

Symposium Brochure and Abstracts (Nov. 2016)

Symposium Reading Materials (Nov. 2016)


Full-length versions of the Symposium video presentations are available in the ACGME’s Bridge learning management system (LMS). The Bridge LMS provides a robust and flexible platform for video and learning resources and a secure and accessible delivery mechanism for members of the GME community.

Contact the Office of Distance Education ( to request a link to the ACGME’s Bridge LMS portal to create a user account. Once you have created a user account, go to the Learning Library to access the Physician Well-Being Symposium Program and videos. Note that use of the ACGME’s Bridge LMS is limited to members of the GME community.

Dr. Thomas Nasca—Opening Address

Dr. Thomas Nasca discusses the issue of well-being at the cultural level by providing a compelling narrative and encouraging the GME community to foster physician well-being.

Dr. Saadia Akhtar—Developing, Implementing, and Evaluating a Well-Being Initiative

Dr. Akhtar discusses the Emergency Medicine community’s response to the issues undermining physician well-being, and showcases a comprehensive set of resources developed by a group of national emergency medicine organizations to educate its physicians.

Dr. Laurence Katznelson—Wellness Initiatives: Stanford Health and Stanford Children’s Health

Dr. Katznelson describes how Stanford Health’s model of wellness was used to develop programming to promote well-being among physicians from medical school to faculty development.

Dr. Thomas Nasca
and Dr. Timothy Brigham—Commitment to Change

Dr. Nasca and Dr. Brigham revisit the rationale behind the collaborative initiative on physician well-being with renewed urgency, and urge all to commit to participating in the work ahead.

Derrick Carpenter, MAPP—Applying the Science of Well-Being to Develop Resilience

Mr. Carpenter reviews components of Penn’s Resilience Program, describing the curriculum and its role in promoting individuals’ ability to withstand adversity and cultivate strategies for resilience over time.

Dr. James Pawelski—Positive Psychology

Dr. Pawelski explains how harnessing the strategies of Positive Psychology, including cultivating positive emotions, engagement, and relationships, as well as ascribing meaning and focusing on accomplishments, can promote physician well-being.

Dr. Rowen Zetterman and Dr. Thomas Nasca—Section VI Well-Being Requirements Review and Comment

Dr. Zetterman details the rationale behind proposed changes to Section VI of the Common Program Requirements related to well-being; Dr. Nasca reviews the evidence supporting the new requirements and explores their implication for practice.

Dr. Sydney Ey—A Decade of Caring for Physicians in Training and Practice

Dr. Ey describes how OHSU developed its successful well-being program and how they overcame barriers common to implementing an institution-wide resource for physicians.

CEO Panel

A panel of hospital CEOs from ACGME Sponsoring Institutions discusses the variety of opportunities, challenges, and approaches to addressing well-being in the clinical environment.

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