American College Of Surgeons - Inspiring Quality: Highest Standards, Better Outcomes

Surgeon Well-Being

Fifty-two percent (52%) of surgeons report burnout. According the World Health Organization, burnout results from chronic workplace stress and is characterized by the depletion of energy and exhaustion, increased mental distance from your job or negative feelings toward your work, and reduced professional efficacy.

Burnout affects how engaged you feel with your patients, colleagues, and work. You may feel a lack of professional purpose. Feelings of being unempowered are common. You are not alone. The American College of Surgeons (ACS) is committed to fostering well-being, resilience, and work-life integration for surgeons at every stage of their careers. ACS is committed to developing and fostering well-being for surgeons.

The American College of Surgeons (ACS) Surgeon Well-Being Program commits to its vision and mission, goals, and initiatives to strength, support, and be an agent of change for Surgeon Well-Being for surgeons at every stage of their careers.

Surgeon Well-Being Program Vision and Mission

To foster well-being, resilience, and work-life integration for surgeons at every career stage.

Through education, resources, tools, and advocacy, the ACS fosters and encourages surgeon’s health and well-being to ensure the physical and mental strength necessary to support their professional pursuits and provide optimal patient care.  At a systems level, the ACS advocates for worksite cultures that support optimal work-life integration for surgeons.

Surgeon Well-Being Program Goals

  • Decrease the stigma around burnout by providing education, resources, and tools for surgeons, program directors, and administrators
  • Address adverse effects of decreased surgeon well-being including signs and symptoms associated with burnout and environment culture.
  • Promote resilience inherent in everyone, especially surgeons, through education, resources, and tools
  • Increase work-life integration by supporting resources that aid the individual surgeon and their family and friends
  • Advocate for systems level change at the local, regional, national, and international levels within programs, organizations, hospitals, institutions, and governmental agencies on practices and policies that affect well-being

ACS Surgeon Well-Being Initiatives

Check back soon for additional information on webinars, toolkits, and more focused on Surgeon Well-Being.

Well-Being in the Time of the COVID-19 Pandemic

The ACS is committed to the health and well-being of surgeons and the health care community. During the COVID-19 pandemic, it is important to create space to care for oneself amidst the increased demands of caring for patients, providing additional support to hospital systems and staff, managing workload, and navigating the impact COVID-19 has on individuals, families, communities, hospitals, and our world.

Access Resources and Tools for Well-Being during COVID-19

Physician Well-Being Index 

This validated, confidential, tool provides an opportunity for you to better understand your overall well-being and identify areas of risk compared to physicians and residents across the nation. Access to local and national resources will also be targeted to you based on your results. The tool is 100% anonymous—your information and score is private and your individual score will not be shared with anyone, including the ACS. Website cookies are not tracked; therefore, your information and access to the Physical Well-Being Index is private. Access for International members is not available at this time.

Well-Being Index Invitation Codes

  • U.S. ACS Fellow/Associate Fellows (practicing surgeons): fellow20
  • U.S. Resident Members (individuals completing surgical training programs): resident20

Enter the invitation code that corresponds to your membership status.

Access the Well-Being Index 

Additional Resources

We have compiled resources from the College, the American Medical Associate, the Accreditation Council for Graduate Medical Education, the National Academy of Medicine, and the Association of American Medical Colleges.

View the resources

A Note of Thanks

The Board of Governors Physician Competency and Health Workgroup created the initial list of well-being resources for surgeons, and this list is updated regularly. The Workgroup’s efforts to address issues related to physical and mental wellness for Fellows as well as surgical competency, credentialing, and practice within expected community standards is appreciated. 

Contact Us

For more information about Surgeon Well-Being, Physician Well-Being Index tool or other listed resources, or to recommend additional resources to add to this site, please contact Kathleen McCann at kmccann@facs.org or Jenny Mohan at jmohan@facs.org.