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Stress-Reduction App May Help Reduce Physician Burnout

A medical director with Kindred Health Systems in Gardenia, California, John M. Kennedy, MD, is a board-certified cardiologist with nearly 20 years of experience. Also the developer of the Encardia Wellness stress-reduction app, John M. Kennedy, MD, has developed simple, research-proven ways to reduce stress among medical providers.

With high patient caseloads and heavy administrative duties, physicians and other health care providers experience burnout at high rates. The pioneer of the app-based BREATHE technique, Dr. Kennedy studied a group of physicians to assess their stress levels before and after completing the BREATHE stress-reduction exercise.

The study included 29 physicians who joined a month-long workplace stress reduction competition at their multi-specialty medical group. The physicians’ heart rates were captured before and after they completed the seven-step exercise, which includes controlled breathing and guided imagery. The results of the study showed that the BREATHE technique is consistently effective at helping physicians manage their workplace stress. Although further research is needed, BREATHE has shown the potential to improve self-care and prevent burnout among physicians.

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