PHP and Addiction Resources

Important update

The MSDC Physician Health Program has issued new guidance for participants regarding testing. This is in response to the COVID-19 outbreak. Read more here.

technology-3154811_1920The MSDC Physician Health Program is a private, confidential, non-disciplinary program that works to advocate for the health and well-being of all physicians in the metropolitan Washington, DC, area and to safeguard the public.

The Program is HIPAA compliant and protects the confidentiality of participant records as set forth under DC and Federal law. The program is administered by the Medical Society of DC and is separate from the DC Board of Medicine. Read more in the MSDC PHP brochure.

For a confidential consultation for your or a colleague that may benefit from our help, please call (202) 466-1800 x102 or email us.  This is not an emergency service; for emergencies please call 911 or the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline at 1-800-273-TALK.


The PHP can help hospitals meet Joint Commission requirements by providing information on physician impairment at medical staff meetings or grand rounds. An overview of the services or a CME lecture on physician impairment may be scheduled by contacting Steve Carreras by email.

Support Your Colleagues

Do you want to help support your fellow physicians going through their own struggles? The Sterling Ruffin Fund was established to fund physician health and addiction programs. Your generous gift allows MSDC to continue supporting those physicians in most need.

Donate here

Study: Time of Day Writing Clinical Notes May Impact Workload

Nov 24, 2021, 12:25 PM by MSDC Staff
When you document your clinical notes may make a huge difference in work-life balance, according to a new study.

When and how you write up your clinical notes may have a bigger impact on your long-term wellbeing at work than thought, accordingly to a recently released study. 

A study published in the Journal of the American Medical Informatics Association tracked the progress note production styles of internal medicine residents at UC San Francisco during three two-week periods. The notes covered 279 inpatient encounters. The study found that residents who wrote notes throughout the day registered more clinical time. The study posits this is likely due to residents needing to start and stop their notations and needing to re-read information before making additional notes. This time spent reviewing previous entries meant more clinical time, especially in the evening.

For those residents who dedicated set time during the day for notetaking, the study found those who focused during the morning or afternoon spent less time "at work" than those who dedicated time in the evening to clinical notes. The authors suggest this is due to more recall needed during the evening, when residents would have to "jog their memory" on what they wrote and why. Instead, dedicating time during work hours allowed residents to write more contemporary notes and require less recall.

The authors also suggest this could impact best practices for EHR documentation. Rather than templates or set requirements for documenting information in an EHR, the authors suggest that how notes are done may have a bigger impact on medical errors and burnout.

Read the study here.