Licensee health and wellness is a critical component in achieving the Oregon Medical Board's mission of protecting patients while promoting access to quality care. As stated in the American Medical Association's policy on Physician Health and Wellness, "When health or wellness is compromised, so may the safety and effectiveness of the medical care provided."
The Oregon Wellness Program (OWP)
The Board supports a proactive, broad approach to licensee wellness. The Board's prevention, treatment, and rehabilitation efforts have led to the inception of a statewide initiative known as the Oregon Wellness Program. This new program "promotes the wellness of health care professionals through education, coordinated regional counseling services, telemedicine services, and research." Services are currently available in Central Oregon and will continue to spread throughout the state by using collaborative agreements with regional medical societies and institutions.
More information on the Oregon Wellness Program is available at https://oregonwellnessprogram.org.
Other Available Wellness Programs
Medical Society of Metropolitan Portland Physician Wellness Program
Lane County Medical Society Provider Wellness Program
Oregon Health and Science University Wellness Program
Hazelden Treatment Program for Health Care Professionals (Newberg, OR)
The Oregon Medical Association has a list of wellness resources for physicians, PAs and students available on their website.
The American Medical Association Opinion 9.3.1 and 9.3.2 on Physician Health and Wellness directs physicians to maintain personal health and wellness and to seek help when health and wellness are compromised.
The International Conference on Physician Health is a conference held every
other year that is hosted by the American Medical Association (AMA), Canadian
Medical Association (CMA), or British Medical Association (BMA) on a rotating basis.
Continuing Education on Suicide Risk
Suicide is a major public health issue and among the leading causes of death in Oregon. There are more than 650 suicides in Oregon each year, and more than 2,000 hospitalizations due to suicide attempts. Individuals who attempt suicide, when not fatal, can have lasting health problems that may include brain damage, organ failure, depression and other mental health problems. Suicide also affects survivors and communities. In addition, suicide and other self-inflicted injuries result in an estimated $41.2 billion in combined medical and work loss costs in the United States annually.
New in 2018, all health professional licensing boards in Oregon will begin reporting on whether licensees are taking continuing education on suicide risk assessment, treatment and management. Senate Bill 48 (2017) requires licensees to report any such continuing education when renewing their state license to practice. The Oregon Medical Board encourages your participation in continuing education on this important public health issue. All continuing education on this topic is considered relevant to the practice of all licensees, regardless of specialty. These continuing education hours may be used to fulfill your required ongoing education to maintain your license.