The catastrophic collapse of morale among hospital physicians in Japan
Department of Health Management and Policy, Graduate School of Medicine, University of Tokyo, Tokyo, Japan
Abstract: The past few decades have witnessed bleak pictures of unhappy physicians worldwide. Japanese physicians working in hospitals are particularly distressed. Today, Japan’s healthcare system is near collapse because physicians are utterly demoralized. Their loss of morale is due to budget constraints, excessive demands, physician shortages, poor distribution, long working hours, hostile media, increasing lawsuits, and violence by patients. Severe cost-saving policies, inadequate distribution of healthcare resources, and the failure to communicate risks has damaged physicians’ morale and created conflicts between physicians and society. Physicians should communicate the uncertainty, limitations, and risks of modern medicine to all members of society. No resolution can be achieved unless trust exists between physicians, patients, the public, the media, bureaucrats, politicians and jurists.
Keywords: physician’s morale, physician shortages, overwork, health policy
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