I’m No Superman: fostering physician resilience through guided group discussion of Scrubs

Arthur Holtzclaw*, Jack Ellis, Christopher Colombo

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

1 Scopus citations


Background: Almost half of trainees experience burnout during their career. Despite the Accreditation Council on Graduate Medical Education (ACGME) recommendation that training programs enact well-being curricula, there is no proven method of addressing this difficult topic. Methods: We created a curriculum addressing physician resiliency and well-being, designed for an Internal Medicine Residency Program. This curriculum utilized episodes from a medical television series, Scrubs, to facilitate a monthly, 1-h faculty guided discussion group. We collected informal feedback and abbreviated Maslach Burnout Inventories (aMBI) monthly and conducted a formal focus group after 6 months to gauge its effectiveness. Results: The curriculum was successfully conducted for 12 months with each session averaging 18–20 residents. Residents reported high satisfaction, stating it was more enjoyable and helpful than traditional resiliency training. 19 of 24 residents (79 %) completed a baseline aMBI, and 17 of 20 residents (85 %) who attended the most recent session completed the 6-month follow-up, showing a non-significant 1-point improvement in all subsets of the aMBI. Conclusions: This novel, low-cost, easily implemented curriculum addressed resiliency and burn-out in an Internal Medicine Residency. It was extremely well received and can easily be expanded to other training programs or to providers outside of training.

Original languageEnglish
Article number419
JournalBMC Medical Education
Issue number1
StatePublished - Dec 2021
Externally publishedYes


  • Burnout
  • Curriculum
  • GME
  • Media in education
  • Physician wellbeing


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