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Finding Work-Life Balance

A career in gynecologic oncology can be rewarding, however, it is universally strenuous and demanding. Caring for people with gynecologic cancers (and complex gynecologic problems) requires a significant and continuous commitment from providers—this can lead to burnout.

This page represents an effort of the Society of Gynecologic Oncology (SGO) Wellness Committee to shed light on the high rate of burnout in gynecologic oncology as a specialty, promote discussion, and provide resources and potential solutions. The SGO Wellness Committee was formed in response to a membership survey which established a high prevalence of physician burnout in gynecologic oncologists, affecting over 30% of respondents. Understanding the importance of physician wellness, this committee was assembled to address the following mission and goals.

SGO’s 2020 State of the Society Survey provides detailed information on wellness as it relates specifically to the subspecialty of gynecologic oncology, in addition to demographics, practice characteristics, activities, professional liability and revenues.

SGO members who are interested in writing a first-person column for the “Voices” wellness blog in the SGO Issues newsletter can contact Wellness Committee staff liaison Jessica Oldham.

Mission and Goals

SGO joined the National Academy of Medicine’s movement on combating burnout and improving clinician well-being.



By understanding the stressors and devising timely interventions, all members of the women’s cancer care team can implement approaches to help reduce the risk of stress and burnout and improve career satisfaction and wellness. The goals of this volunteer task force include:

  • Raising awareness
  • Providing intervention tools and techniques
  • Conducting additional research and surveys, and pooling resources for investigation and intervention
  • Providing additional education to SGO members

Committee Leadership

  • Chair: David Kushner, MD, University of Wisconsin, Madison, WI
  • Co-Chair: Kenneth Kim, MD, Cedars-Sinai Medical Center, Los Angeles, CA
  • SGO Staff Liaison: Jessica Oldham

Wellness Perspectives

See All Blog Posts

Dec 2, 2020

Research, Racism and Bending the Arc in Gynecologic Cancers | Charlotte Gamble, MD, MPH

Author(s): Charlotte Gamble
Categories: DiversityInclusion & Health Equity
Nov 18, 2020

With Gratitude and Thanksgiving | Wellness Committee

Author(s): VoicesWellness
Categories: VoicesWellnessWellness Perspectives
Nov 18, 2020

Voices: Cancer Survivor Writes Poem of Gratitude for Her Doctors

Author(s): Peggy Harris
Categories: VoicesWellnessWellness Perspectives
Nov 18, 2020

Voices: The Science of Gratitude | Lynn Calat, NP

Author(s): Lynn Calat
Categories: VoicesWellnessWellness Perspectives
Nov 4, 2020

Improving Care for LGBT+ individuals in an Imperfect System | Allison Asante, PA-C

Author(s): Allison Asante
Categories: DiversityHealth EquityInclusion & Health Equity
Oct 22, 2020

I’m Done Wearing a Mask: Part 2 | Renee Cowan, MD, MPH

Author(s): Renee Cowan
Categories: DiversityInclusion & Health Equity

“I have spent a lot of time learning organizational skills and as my career has progressed, a key thing has been learning that it is okay to say NO!”

Carol L. Brown, MD

Wellness Resources

See All Wellness Resources

Apr 2, 2020

Staying Well During the COVID-19 Pandemic Crisis

Type: Recommendations
Type: CoronavirusWellness
Apr 24, 2020

National Wellness Institute

Type: Website
Type: Wellness
Apr 24, 2020

Taking Action Against Clinician Burnout A Systems Approach to Professional Well-Being by The National Academy of Medicine

Type: Books & Articles
Type: Wellness
Nov 1, 2016

Stress and burnout among gynecologic oncologists: A Society of Gynecologic Oncology Evidence-based Review and Recommendations (SGO, 2016)

Type: Journal Articles
Type: Wellness
May 5, 2016

SGO Wellness Introduction, Jeffrey Fowler, MD

Type: Video
Type: Wellness
Apr 24, 2020

Chopra Center Meditation

Type: Website
Type: Wellness

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