How to Prevent GP Burnout

The strain being put on the UK’s healthcare sector is no secret. Yet when we hear that four-hundred and three doctors committed suicide in four years (Pulse, 2019), the severity of GP burnout becomes shockingly clear.

Many are left wondering ‘how we can better support healthcare professionals?’

This article explores a few ways in which we can reduce the burnout and exhaustion of doctors.

Whether you are a GP yourself, a practice manager or a friend or relative of a doctor, we hope these tips can be of use.

GP Burnout

GP Health Service

With the pressures of the healthcare sector rising, one thousand doctors self-referred themselves to the GP Health Service in just ten months (GP Online, 2018).

This confidential NHS service provides doctors with support, advice and generally someone to vent to.

However GP burnout presents itself, be it stress, mental health, depression or addiction, the GP Health service is able to connect you with ongoing treatment, therapies, and access to groups.

Their contact details can be found at the bottom of this article.

Peer Support

When asked the most rewarding part of their job, a common answer from doctors was team spirit and working with a great team (Medcare, 2019) – so let’s utilize that.

Organizing out of work activities and quarterly staff parties is a great way to maintain morale within any team.

Given that the NHS is such a close-knit group and work so excellently together, extra-curricular opportunities to have fun and de-stress activities would be welcomed.

Additionally, 89% of GP’s revealed that they are not rewarded for meeting specific goals (Medcare, 2019).

Therefore, it’s vital to ensure that staff feel valued, and not like working machines.

This is where peer support comes in. Something as simple as a cuppa and a chat to say well done with your employee or a hug from a colleague, it goes a long way.

Speech Recognition

99% of GP’s stated that the creation of patient documentation is a burden to them (Nuance, 2018).

In recent years healthcare professionals have turned to technology such as speech recognition to better manage their workloads.

Speech recognition (SR) is software that allows you to speak aloud into a microphone and the words appear on your computer screen.

It’s completely certified with 90% of EPR’s including EMIS.

Watch Dragon Medical & EMIS work together in this video.

It’s extremely efficient in managing workloads within various organisations, but what exactly does the workload of a GP look like?

The chart shows that a huge proportion of a doctors day, 45% in fact, is spent on completing administration tasks.

With all of this to do in just one day, it’s understandable that GP’s are experiencing extreme stress and job dissatisfaction.

The average human can type forty words per minute. However, voice recognition users can create one-hundred and sixty words per minute – that’s more than 3x faster than typing.

When calculated, SR users are saving at least an hour a day which obtains a value of £70. Which when calculated accordingly, equates to £16,100 per year (Nuance, 2018).

The software has improved the quality of life of our GP’s, it was a good investment for the practice.

Elaine Turner, East Parade Surgery.

What could GP’s do with that free time? Actually, take their lunch break rather than eat on the go? Or finally, go home on time?

Although seemingly trivial, this extra time allows doctors time throughout their day to unwind and will improve their overall welfare.

That concludes our top tips for reducing GP burnout. We hope they are helpful and that collectively, with the help of technology, we can take better care of the backbone of the NHS – it’s staff.

GP Health Service – 03000303300 or

GP Burnout
GP Burnout

If you are interested in taking better care of your practice and finding out more about Dragon Medical speech recognition, please get in touch – we’d love to hear from you.

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March 18, 2019
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