AHN becomes 1st healthcare system in state to remove mental health questions from applications

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One in four physicians were either afraid to seek mental health help or knew a doctor who was.

“You want to be the caregiver, you don’t want your colleagues to believe that you are weak,” said Dr. Tom Campbell, AHN’s Chief Wellness Officer.

The reason behind this is the questions found on most healthcare applications for jobs, licensing, credentialing and insurance. The questions surround if you’ve ever sought mental health treatment.

“It’s certainly fair game to say is there anything today that is limiting you from doing the work we need? That’s a fair question, its not fair to ask if you’ve ever had any problems,” Campbell said.

That’s why Allegheny Health Network is the first healthcare system in the state to remove those questions from their applications.

“I immediately received a flood of messages from nurses and doctors thanking us during COVID I got mental health treatment because I was so stressed so fearful that when I applied for the renewal for my license would I lose it. I mean what kind of a world are we in,” said Corey Feist who’s the CEO of the Dr. Lorna Breen Heroes’ Foundation.

In Pennsylvania, it’s not even a topic of discussion, which is something that Campbell hopes to change as their hospital takes the first steps to breaking these barriers and bringing wellness spaces to each hospital throughout the system.

“It’s only one piece of the puzzle, we have to create systematic ways for people to not get burnt out and to enjoy the profession, so we can attract the great people we need for healthcare,” Campbell said.

For more information on the Dr. Lorna Breen Heroes’ Foundation, click here.

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