American College Of Surgeons - Inspiring Quality: Highest Standards, Better Outcomes

Surgeon Well-Being

Fifty-two percent (52%) of surgeons report burnout. According the World Health Organization, burnout results from chronic workplace stress and is characterized by the depletion of energy and exhaustion, increased mental distance from your job or negative feelings toward your work, and reduced professional efficacy.

Burnout affects how engaged you feel with your patients, colleagues, and work. You may feel a lack of professional purpose. Feelings of being unempowered are common. You are not alone. The American College of Surgeons (ACS) is committed to fostering well-being, resilience, and work-life integration for surgeons at every stage of their careers. ACS is committed to developing and fostering well-being for surgeons.

The American College of Surgeons (ACS) Surgeon Well-Being Program commits to its vision and mission, goals, and initiatives to strength, support, and be an agent of change for Surgeon Well-Being for surgeons at every stage of their careers.

About the Surgeon Well-Being Program

Vision and Mission

To foster well-being, resilience, and work-life integration for surgeons at every career stage.

Through education, resources, tools, and advocacy, the ACS fosters and encourages surgeon’s health and well-being to ensure the physical and mental strength necessary to support their professional pursuits and provide optimal patient care.  At a systems level, the ACS advocates for worksite cultures that support optimal work-life integration for surgeons.


  • Decrease the stigma around burnout by providing education, resources, and tools for surgeons, program directors, and administrators
  • Address adverse effects of decreased surgeon well-being including signs and symptoms associated with burnout and environment culture.
  • Promote resilience inherent in everyone, especially surgeons, through education, resources, and tools
  • Increase work-life integration by supporting resources that aid the individual surgeon and their family and friends
  • Advocate for systems level change at the local, regional, national, and international levels within programs, organizations, hospitals, institutions, and governmental agencies on practices and policies that affect well-being

ACS Surgeon Well-Being Initiatives

Managing Microaggressions: What to Do When It Gets Personal Webinar SeriesManaging Microaggressions: What to Do When It Gets Personal Webinar

Watch Part I which features a panel of experts exploring the relationship between microaggressions and surgeon well-being.

Join us for Part II on Wednesday, June 9, 2021, 10:30am–11:30 am CST. Registration coming soon! Part II will discuss the management and coping strategies when facing microaggressions as the receiver and upstander.

Part I

Reframing Wellness WebinarReframing Surgeon Well-Being: How the Trauma Model Informs Approaches to Well-Being Solutions at Systemic Levels 

Listen to a panel of experts as they discuss how to apply the trauma model to surgeon well-being and address various issues, factors, and drivers at all levels of well-being at an organization.

Watch the recording

Well-Being in the Time of the COVID-19 Pandemic

The ACS is committed to the health and well-being of surgeons and the health care community. During the COVID-19 pandemic, it is important to create space to care for oneself amidst the increased demands of caring for patients, providing additional support to hospital systems and staff, managing workload, and navigating the impact COVID-19 has on individuals, families, communities, hospitals, and our world.

Access Resources and Tools for Well-Being during COVID-19

Additional Resources

We have compiled resources from the College, the American Medical Associate, the Accreditation Council for Graduate Medical Education, the National Academy of Medicine, and the Association of American Medical Colleges.

View the resources

Access to the Physician Well-Being Index is no longer available through the American College of Surgeons. We encourage you to check with your hospital organization or institution to see if they provide access.

A Note of Thanks

The Board of Governors Physician Competency and Health Workgroup created the initial list of well-being resources for surgeons, and this list is updated regularly. The Workgroup’s efforts to address issues related to physical and mental wellness for Fellows as well as surgical competency, credentialing, and practice within expected community standards is appreciated. 

Contact Us

For more information about Surgeon Well-Being, Physician Well-Being Index tool or other listed resources, or to recommend additional resources to add to this site, please contact Kathleen McCann at or Jenny Mohan at