Rosemont, Ill., April 7, 2021 – The Society for Vascular Surgery (SVS) and the Academy for Surgical Coaching today announced a partnership to develop a first-of-its-kind coaching program that strengthens wellness support for vascular surgeons. Studies have demonstrated that physicians across specialties are experiencing an increase in burnout, anxiety, depression and suicidal ideation. This is due to the rewarding, yet demanding, nature of their work and the barriers preventing them from providing optimal patient care.
Research conducted by the SVS Wellness Task Force has reinforced and replicated many of these findings within the specialty of vascular surgery. With this new program, customized to vascular surgery, SVS aims to address the triggers of burnout and provide wellness support through coaching intervention.
“We are excited about our partnership with the Academy for Surgical Coaching and consider it a shining example of how we are listening and responding to our members regarding wellness initiatives,” said Dawn Coleman, MD, co-chair of the SVS Wellness Task Force. “We believe we are one of the first medical societies to take the translational step from studying and discussing the issues to providing service and support for members.”
Initially, SVS hopes to recruit and train a dozen vascular surgeons to become certified surgical coaches, each of whom will be paired with as many as two vascular surgeons seeking support for a three-month period. Over the course of a year, it is hoped each surgical coach will work with up to four SVS members. SVS will expand the program if evaluation demonstrates success.
“Our experience shows surgeons love working with surgical coaches because it changes the way they think about their practice,” said Caprice Greenberg, MD, MPH, the president and co-founder of the Academy for Surgical Coaching. “The coaching sessions will focus on identifying challenges, setting goals and pushing for continuous improvement. Surgeons can discuss operative performance, leadership skills, clinical judgement or self-regulation. The surgical coach is there to support vascular surgeons to achieve their individualized and self-identified goals.”
As practicing vascular surgeons themselves, the surgical coaches will be well positioned to help their colleagues manage professional challenges and ultimately increase job satisfaction. Additionally, peer-to-peer support will help minimize the isolation associated with vascular surgery and destigmatize the culture of “complacent suffering.”
“We want to make sure we address the inherent issues, such as emotional exhaustion and depersonalization, that might be contributing to burnout among vascular surgeons,” said Niten Singh, MD, co-designer of the program. “We will focus on these issues first.”
Vascular surgeons are highly trained specialists focused on prevention and treatment of vascular disease, affecting the veins and arteries in every part of the body, excluding the brain and heart. Vascular surgery is the only specialty trained to deliver comprehensive care, across the full spectrum of treatment options from medical management, to minimially invasive intervention, to open surgery.
Funding support for this program is made possible in part by a grant from W.L. Gore & Associates, Inc., as part of the SVS Quality Practice Block Grant program.
About theSociety for Vascular Surgery
The Society for Vascular Surgery is the leading not-for-profit, professional medical society on establishing causes and treatments for vascular disease. SVS seeks to advance excellence and innovation in vascular health through education, advocacy, research and public awareness and is composed of specialty-trained vascular surgeons who are dedicated to providing comprehensive care for vascular disease. For more information visit www.vascular.org. Follow the SVS on Facebook @VascularHealth, Twitter @VascularSVS and Instagram @societyforvascularsurgery.
About The Academy for Surgical Coaching
Coaches support athletes, musicians and teachers to go from being great to being world-class. The Academy for Surgical Coaching is changing the way surgeons learn through partnerships with Surgical Coaches. Surgical Coaches are surgeons with additional training in guiding surgeons to develop new ways of thinking about surgery and improving their practice through goal-setting, action-planning and follow up. The Surgical Coaching program was developed through academic research in collaboration with major academic medical centers and has been proven in clinical trials to change the way surgeons do surgery. The Academy for Surgical Coaching trains surgeons to become Surgical Coaches, pairs surgeons with Surgical Coaches, and manages coaching programs. The Academy for Surgical Coaching has trained over 130 Surgical Coaches and conducted over 300 hours of surgical coaching. The Academy for Surgical Coaching is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization. For more information visit https://surgicalcoaching.org.
Beth Richman Weisskopf