Healthcare Triage: Doctors and Depression

When I was an intern, or a first-year doctor in training, I knew something was wrong with me. I had trouble sleeping. I had difficulty feeling joy. I was prone to crying at inopportune times. Even worse, I had trouble connecting with patients. I felt like I couldn’t please anyone, and I found myself susceptible to feelings of despair and panic.

My residency program set up an “intern support group”, run by a social worker in the hospital. It was very well attended by most of my training cohort.

I’m a physician, and, if I do say so myself, a very well trained one. Yet is still took this support group, close friends, and my then-fiancé to convince me that I might need help. Even if I couldn’t acknowledge it, they could see I was suffering from depression.

I wasn’t alone. That’s the topic of this week’s Healthcare Triage.

This was adapted from a column I wrote at The Upshot. Links to further reading and references can be found there.


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