Objectives: The objective of this study was to highlight and assess the important topic of the voluntary departure of the physician from his/her clinic. We used the topic of the voluntary departure of a family physician from the clinic as an example. The physician’s leaving challenges the personal credo regarding the continuity of care, which is a basic concept in Family Medicine, and other professions, too: Psychiatrists are also devoted to long-term doctor-patient care. Leaving a place of work is a significant life event that can be accompanied by stress and even a crisis for the doctor, patients, and staff. Methods: In this article, we will present four stories, of four family physicians who voluntarily left their practices, written from a reflective point of view, either before or after the actual departure. The stories will be analyzed in a qualitative way, and the central themes and narratives will be defined. Results: The personal departure stories revealed important personal and systemic themes that emerge from and influence the departure process. Among the themes were: practical and emotional work circumstances; leaving as a grief process; and reactions of patients, staff, and management. Conclusion: Qualitative analysis revealed that the voluntary departure of the family physician has complex personal and systemic implications. Practical implications: The combination of Balint group discussions and written reflections can help the physician better cope with the departure and also help patients and staff deal with the separation process.
|Number of pages
|Israel Journal of Psychiatry and Related Sciences
|Published - 11 Aug 2015