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Many physicians and other health care workers have been experiencing enormous levels of stress and uncertainty while providing care for patients with coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19). Those who work in epicenters of the virus may care for high numbers of critically ill patients and experience psychological trauma related to exposure to many deaths in a short period of time or threat of death for themselves, colleagues, or loved ones. These clinicians may have encountered various challenges, such as not having enough personal protective equipment, being assigned to practice in areas outside their expertise, dealing with a lack of known therapeutics, making difficult decisions about rationing or prioritizing care, and facing disruptions affecting many aspects of health care and daily life. This acute stress among health care professionals is superimposed on preexisting high levels of occupationally related psychological and occupational stress.1
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Corresponding Author: Kristine Olson, MD, MSc, Yale School of Medicine, 20 York St, New Haven, CT 06510 (firstname.lastname@example.org).
Published Online: October 8, 2020. doi:10.1001/jama.2020.20275
Conflict of Interest Disclosures: Dr Shanafelt reported receiving royalties for the book Mayo Clinic Strategies to Reduce Burnout: 12 Actions to Create the Ideal Workplace, being co-inventor of Well-being Index instruments and the Participatory Management Leadership Index, and at times receiving honoraria for providing grand rounds/keynote lectures and advising for health care organizations. Dr Southwick reported receiving royalties for the book Resilience: The Science of Mastering Life’s Greatest Challenges. No other disclosures were reported.
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