UNM Providers

Healing the Healers

UNM Health Sciences Honored by American Medical Association for Promoting Well-Being of Health Care Workers

The University of New Mexico Health Sciences has earned recognition from the American Medical Association’s Joy in Medicine™ Health System Recognition Program.

The AMA distinction is granted only to those organizations that demonstrate a commitment to preserving the well-being of clinical care team members by engaging in proven efforts to combat work-related stress and burnout.

“Health systems that have earned recognition from the AMA’s Joy in Medicine Health System Recognition Program have demonstrated that the well-being of health professionals is essential to caring for the health and wellness of patients, families and communities,” said AMA President Jack Resneck Jr., MD.

“United by a commitment to build a culture of wellness that energizes care teams, the recipients of the Joy in Medicine Recognition are at the forefront and among the best at creating a workplace that makes a difference in the lives of clinical caregivers.”

A 2021 report based on research led by the AMA shows that “feeling valued by one’s organization was strongly associated with lower stress” and serves as a protective factor against work-related physician burnout. 

This important finding has paved the way for many organizations to re-examine how leadership, culture, peer support, and removing obstacles to patient care act together to create the conditions where joy, purpose and meaning in medicine are possible. This year’s Joy in Medicine recipients have all taken important steps to support physician well-being for the long term.

At UNM that included creation of the Office of Professional Well-Being in the School of Medicine, which supports medical students, residents and faculty members by offering resources and workshops to better manage stress and enhance personal resilience. The office also provides access to mental health resources and explores novel strategies to improve efficiency of practice.

The AMA began the Joy in Medicine Recognition Program in 2019 to create momentum for wide-spanning change in the culture of medicine that emphasizes professional well-being in health care.

This year, 28 health systems nationwide earned recognition, representing more than 80,000 physicians, with documented efforts to reduce system-level drivers of work-related burnout and demonstrated competencies in commitment, assessment, leadership, efficiency of practice environment, teamwork and support.

This year’s recipients join more than 50 organizations representing more than 120,000 physicians, recognized by the program since its inception in 2019.

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