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Burnout in the age of COVID-19
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  • Published on:
    Burnout in the age of COVID-19 - Navigating medical school during a pandemic
    • Tien Tran, Medical Student St George's University of London
    • Other Contributors:
      • Luamar Dolfini, Medical Student
      • Shahmeen Rasul, Medical Student
      • Syeda A Zahra, Medical Student

    Dear Editor,

    We thank Dr Launer[1] for his reflection on burnout in the age of COVID-19. We would like to share our views on burnout as senior medical students. We believe that medical students are not immune to the pressures that have come from this pandemic and that there are important lessons for students about how to manage burnout before commencing their careers.

    As students, we look to our senior colleagues as examples of how to manage stress and maintain a healthy work life balance. We have seen the passion that most doctors carry with them despite the circumstances and hope to apply what we have observed in our future careers. In Dr Launer’s intriguing reflection, he mentions that junior doctors should be protected from the illusion that clinicians will remain consistently fired with enthusiasm from foundation training through to retirement. We believe this is a concept that should be taught from the very beginning of one’s career, namely in medical school.

    We remember as prospective medical students in secondary education, the discussions that surrounded pursuing a career in medicine being altogether the same - a rhetoric of saving lives and having a job that would be forever fulfilling. Although much of this is true, it seems throughout our education and inevitably as foundation doctors, the sugar-coating is removed and we are able to see what we were never told – that being a doctor can be hard, exhausting and frankly disappointing at ti...

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    Conflict of Interest:
    None declared.