Professional Societies’ Role in Addressing Member Burnout and Promoting Well-Being

Seppo T. Rinne, Tina Shah, Ekaterina Anderson, Sarah Delgado, Vicki Good, Nneka Sederstrom, Curtis N. Sessler, Scott P. Sherry, Steven Q. Simpson, Karen Collishaw, Marc Moss

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

4 Scopus citations


Rationale: Critical care clinicians have high burnout rates. Previous studies have explored individual and organizational solutions to address burnout, but existing literature has not considered how professional societies can prevent burnout and promote member well-being. Objectives: The Critical Care Society Collaborative convened a task force to document professional society initiatives to address burnout, explore perspectives on the role of societies to address burnout, and develop recommendations that could guide critical care societies’ efforts to promote well-being. Methods: We conducted a multiphase evaluation of 17 major U.S. professional societies whose members regularly work in critical care settings. We asked representatives from each society to document their existing well-being initiatives, and we conducted semistructured interviews to explore perspectives on the role of professional societies to address burnout. The task force members then met to discuss phase one and two findings to develop recommendations that could act as a roadmap to guide future society efforts. Results: All society representatives agreed that professional societies have a responsibility to address burnout, and they described various well-being initiatives that could act as examples for future efforts. We developed a roadmap with the following recommendations: 1) Acknowledge the problem of burnout; 2) Commit to supporting member well-being; 3) Create collaborations to promote well-being; 4) Educate and advocate for change; 5) Foster innovation through research; and 6) Support organizational and individual solutions. Conclusions: Our findings highlight a clear role for professional societies to address burnout and promote members’ well-being.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1482-1489
Number of pages8
JournalAnnals of the American Thoracic Society
Issue number9
StatePublished - Sep 2021


  • Burnout
  • Professional satisfaction
  • Professional society

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Pulmonary and Respiratory Medicine


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