Physician and medical student suicide is usually kept under guarded wraps. It’s a well kept secret. The phenomenon, which claims at least 400 individuals annually in the US, is one of the alarming results of dysfunctional medical systems. This happens globally. Often the medical culture is one “that condones hazing, bullying, sexual harassment, and teaching by public humiliation.” Physicians and students who struggle to cope with the unrelenting stress, is often marginalized by the same system that train and manage them. They are made out to be weak and incompetent. Assistance to physicians for mental health issues presently comes at the price of additional punishment by the respective colleges.
Pamela Wible, known for her international efforts to stop the abuse in medicine, answers letters of victims of abuse, and their family members. People don’t commit suicide—they die due to suicide.
Public awareness of this very real entity is necessary if we ever hope to change the culture and empower individuals who are trained to help people, but in the end see no other way out due to relentless bullying and abuse.
We can stop this.