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The level of stress in women increased from 48 percent to 51 percent during the pandemic. Pixabay

The Covid-19 pandemic has severely affected the mental and emotional well-being of doctors, with female physicians and those in critical care and infectious disease reporting among the highest rates of burnout during the pandemic, according to findings from a new report.

The ‘Death by 1,000 Cuts: Medscape National Physician Burnout and Suicide Report 2021’ shows that although burnout rates were stable from the previous year’s report, at 42 percent overall, the level in women increased from 48 percent to 51 percent during the pandemic, while burnout in male physicians overall remained unchanged from 2019.


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“Many women physicians are in families with children at home. It’s already known that women assume more responsibilities in the home than do men. The pressures have increased during Covid-19: having to be their child’s teacher during homeschooling; no childcare; and the grandparents can’t babysit. Those all bring enormous pressure and burdens. In addition, all doctors and nurses are worried about bringing the virus home to their families,” says US-based psychiatrist Carol Bernstein in the report.

Burnout and the stress of the pandemic (personal risk, social distancing, financial uncertainty) appeared to diminish physicians’ overall work-life happiness, with only 49 percent reporting they were happy in 2020 versus 69 percent pre-pandemic.


Mental and emotional well being of Doctors has been affected due to Covid19. Pixabay

More than one-third reported feeling unhappy last year, compared with 19 percent in 2019. Shortage of personal protective equipment (PPE), difficult conditions, long hours, grief over losing patients, and watching patients’ families suffer added a layer of extreme stress and exhaustion for many frontline workers, suggests the report.

Nearly three-quarters of millennial physicians (25-39) and GenXrs (40-54) and two-thirds of boomers (55-73) said burnout has had a negative effect on their personal relationships, says the report based on responses from over 12,000 physicians. Burnout is described as long-term, unresolved, job-related stress leading to exhaustion, cynicism, detachment from job responsibilities, and lacking a sense of personal accomplishment.

ALSO READ: Doctors Talk About Challenges they Face During the Pandemic

Of the 20 percent of physicians who said they were depressed, one in five reported clinical depression, and more than two-thirds said they felt down (colloquial depression) during 2020. Of those reporting depression, 13 percent said they experienced suicidal thoughts, and 1 percent attempted suicide.

“More than one-third of all physicians who report depression say it leads them to be more easily exasperated with patients, 24 percent are less careful when taking patient notes and 15 percent said depression results in them making errors they would otherwise not make,” says the Medscape report. (IANS)


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Japan launched its new satellite, QZS-1R.

Japan has successfully launched a new navigation satellite into orbit that will replace its decade-old navigation satellite.

The satellite, QZS-1R, was launched onboard an H-2A rocket that lifted off from the Tanegashima Space Center at 10.19 p.m. on Monday night, Mitsubishi Heavy Industries said in a statement.

The company builds and operates H-2A rockets the Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency (JAXA).

QZS-1R is a replacement for Quasi-Zenith Satellite System 1 satellite first launched in 2010. “It was a really beautiful launch," the company said in a tweet after a successful lift-off.

"H-IIA F44 flight proceeded nominally. Approximately 28 minutes 6 seconds after launch, as planned, the payload separated from the launch vehicle," the statement said.

The official QZSS website lists four satellites in the constellation: QZS-1, QZS-2, QZS-3 and QZS-4, Space.com reported.

The QZSS constellation will eventually consist of a total of seven satellites that fly in an orbit passing through a near-zenith (or directly overhead) above Japan, and QZS-R1 is meant to share nearly the same transmission signals as recent GPS satellites, according to JAXA.

It is specially optimised for mountainous and urban regions in Japan, JAXA said.

Mitsubishi's H-2A 202 rocket launch system has been operational since 2003 and has sent satellites to locations such as Venus (Akatsuki) and Mars (Emirates Mars Mission).

The latest H2-A rocket launch is the first since November 29, 2020, when Japan launched an advanced relay satellite with laser communications tech into orbit, the report said. (IANS/JB)


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