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Trial Evaluating the Effect of Facilitated Small Group Sessions on Physician Well-Being, Job Satisfaction, and Professionalism

This study has been completed.
Information provided by (Responsible Party):
Colin West, Mayo Clinic Identifier:
First received: July 8, 2010
Last updated: November 14, 2012
Last verified: November 2012

The study purpose is to evaluate the effect of a small group discussion based intervention on physician well-being, job satisfaction, and professionalism. Participants will be put in one of 3 groups by chance (as in the flip of a coin). A computerized selection process will be used to assign participants to the study groups. There is a 1 in 3 chance of being assigned at random to either of the 3 groups.

The first study group will meet once every two weeks for 9 months (from September 2010 through June 2011) from 12:30 pm until 2:00 pm. These meetings will be small group discussion sessions with groups of no more than 15 participants. Lunch will be provided for the first 30 minutes, and group discussion during the next 1 hour will be guided by the session facilitator around such topics as work-life balance, meaning in work, medical mistakes, spirituality, and unmet patient needs. However, the discussions will be open forums, and the groups themselves will help decide on topics relevant to the group. The 1 hour of protected non-clinical time every other week required for this group will be funded by the study.

The second study group will also have 1 hour of protected non-clinical time provided every other week for the same 9 months. This study group will not participate in small group discussions, but may use the protected time for professional tasks as they wish.

Participants in the third study group will continue with their current work practices, but will be provided with protected time to complete study surveys. If group sizes are too small after recruitment to allow a complete study of all three groups, the third study group will be removed and participants will be randomly assigned to one of the first two study groups only.

Participants in all groups will be asked to complete a quarterly survey on well-being, job satisfaction, and professionalism. Follow-up surveys will also be administered 3 months and 1 year after the conclusion of the small group sessions. Each survey is expected to take approximately 20-30 minutes to complete.

Condition Intervention Phase
Physician Well-being
Physician Job Satisfaction
Behavioral: Facilitated small groups
Behavioral: Unstructured time.
Behavioral: Usual practice
Phase 2

Study Type: Interventional
Study Design: Allocation: Randomized
Intervention Model: Parallel Assignment
Masking: Single Blind (Outcomes Assessor)
Primary Purpose: Supportive Care

Further study details as provided by Mayo Clinic:

Primary Outcome Measures:
  • Physician burnout [ Time Frame: September 2010 - June 2012 ]
    Burnout measured by the Maslach Burnout Inventory.

Secondary Outcome Measures:
  • Physician job satisfaction [ Time Frame: September 2010 - June 2012 ]
    Job satisfaction measured by validated scales.

Enrollment: 74
Study Start Date: June 2010
Study Completion Date: June 2012
Primary Completion Date: June 2012 (Final data collection date for primary outcome measure)
Arms Assigned Interventions
Experimental: Facilitated small group
Facilitated small groups.
Behavioral: Facilitated small groups
1 hour sessions every 2 weeks for small groups of 9 participants, 19 sessions over 9 months.
Active Comparator: Unstructured protected time
Same time provided as for facilitated small groups, but without structure.
Behavioral: Unstructured time.
1 protected hour every 2 weeks for 9 months, without small group structure.
Placebo Comparator: Usual practice
No protected time.
Behavioral: Usual practice
No protected time provided.


Ages Eligible for Study:   Child, Adult, Senior
Sexes Eligible for Study:   All
Accepts Healthy Volunteers:   No

Inclusion Criteria:

  • Senior Associate Consultant or Consultant in the Mayo Clinic Department of Medicine.

Exclusion Criteria:

  • No clinical effort.
  Contacts and Locations
Choosing to participate in a study is an important personal decision. Talk with your doctor and family members or friends about deciding to join a study. To learn more about this study, you or your doctor may contact the study research staff using the Contacts provided below. For general information, see Learn About Clinical Studies.

Please refer to this study by its identifier: NCT01159977

United States, Minnesota
Mayo Clinic
Rochester, Minnesota, United States, 55905
Sponsors and Collaborators
Mayo Clinic
  More Information

Publications automatically indexed to this study by Identifier (NCT Number):
Responsible Party: Colin West, Consultant, Mayo Clinic Identifier: NCT01159977     History of Changes
Other Study ID Numbers: 09-008232
Study First Received: July 8, 2010
Last Updated: November 14, 2012 processed this record on April 24, 2017