Promoting Clinician Well-being Through Storytelling

In honor of National Suicide Prevention Month, and in promotion of clinician well-being, The Arnold P. Gold Foundation is dedicating the month of September to the creative expression, education, storytelling, and wellness of students and healthcare professionals.  Did you know that 15%-30% of medical students and residents screen positive for depressive symptoms?[i] Did you know that physicians are at risk of suicide at approximately twice the rate of the general population?[ii]

As part of this essential conversation about physician burnout, we would love to hear from you. Has there been a time in your career – as a student, a resident, or a practicing physician – when you have struggled with feelings of depression or burnout? How have you been able to address these challenges? Has your membership in the Gold Humanism Honor Society, or your participation in another Gold Foundation program, helped you navigate a particularly difficult time in your career? Have you helped a friend or colleague during such difficult times? 

We’re interested in hearing and sharing your stories, along with any strategies or resources that you have found helpful. No one is alone in these challenges, and sharing stories can help ease feelings of isolation.

Please share your story by emailing our staff here, or, if you feel comfortable, you can share in our Facebook forum, which is exclusive to GHHS members. Please note that by submitting your story, you are giving the Gold Foundation permission to share it in the future. All submissions will remain anonymous, unless you explicitly state that we can use your name.

The Nocturnist

The Nocturnist is a live show and podcast where doctors share stories from the world of medicine. Based in San Francisco and hosted by physician Emily Silverman, our show is animated by a deep-seated curiosity about health, illness, and human connection.

S1 E7. Missing It:

Take a listen to this The Nocturnist podcast episode which reflects on one family medicine resident’s experience with the electronic health record.

More stories

In September 2017 the Gold Foundation invited GHHS members to share their own experiences with depression and burnout. Read some of the submissions below: 

“I remember feeling overwhelmed by stress and the pressure to succeed”

How NOT to deal with your depression in medical school 

“The only way to feel less isolated is to share our stories”


If you or someone you know is suicidal and in need of emergency help, call 911 or the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline or use the Lifeline Crisis Chat.

[i] Goldman ML, Shah RN, Bernstein CA. Depression and suicide among physician trainees: recommendations for a national response. JAMA Psychiatry. 2015 May. 72 (5):411-2.
[ii] Schernhammer ES, Colditz GA. Suicide rates among physicians: a quantitative and gender assessment (meta-analysis). Am J Psychiatry. 2004 Dec. 161(12):2295-302.