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Physician THRIVE: Powered by UPMC

At UPMC, we have a duty to create a setting that fosters both the physical and emotional well-being for us all:

  • Our patients
  • Our neighbors
  • Our families
  • Ourselves

A message from Drs. Donald M. Yealy, Joon S. Lee, Jennifer Berliner and Rachel Sackrowitz.

Dear Colleagues,
The COVID-19 pandemic has durable and changing circumstances and associated stressors as we give the best possible care to our patients. Today, many of us feel strong negative emotions while caring for patients with COVID-19 who did not follow the recommended COVID-19 preventive measures including vaccination.

Individual decisions to forgo vaccination are usually rooted in fear and misinformation. But it can feel as though some patients or families simply don’t care or appreciate our dedication, assumed risk, and sacrifices while we aid. Our emotions are natural, not a sign of any badness, and understandable. When we feel overwhelmed, we are not alone. In addition to the support of our colleagues, friends, and family, we have access to mental health professionals to help. ( Well-being resources for UPMC Attending Physicians ) Our ask is for you to recognize these feelings and take whatever path that allows you to effectively address them. Your well-being matters.

It can be particularly challenging when patients or families ask for treatments which have not been proven to be effective and are not part of our evidence based UPMC practice. We can use the below script when navigating these requests:

UPMC physicians follow system guidance to care for patients hospitalized with COVID-19 infections. These are thoughtfully created by experts, and all exist to ensure the best care.

Our experts determined that the therapy you are asking about for COVID 19 care is not effective. We cannot offer it. We will always do what is best for you or your loved one, and we know you ask because you care.

We can also seek the support of patient services, palliative care colleagues, and our local leadership including directors, chiefs, VPMAs and CNOs to help navigate ongoing related friction.

We are all in this together. Let’s continue our dialogue about how we can help each other through this phase of the pandemic and provide excellent care for our patients and communities.
— Don, Joon, Jennifer and Rachel

Physician THRIVE News


Learn more about our Covid-19 resources for Physicians 



Contact Us 

Contact the UPMC Physician THRIVE Program at PhysicianTHRIVE@upmc.edu.


The leadership at UPMC recognizes the vital role healthy, passionate, and engaged caregivers play in fulfilling this duty.

We know the unique stressors our practicing modern doctors face and commit to:

  • Partnering with UPMC faculty, trainees, and staff to learn the workplace factors that both promote wellness and lead to burnout.
  • Advancing our current well-being resources and adding new ones tailored to meet your needs and those of our communities.

To achieve this goal, we started the Physician THRIVE program in 2018.

Physician THRIVE: Supporting Your Health and Well-being

Physician THRIVE is a committee of doctors focused on:

  • Learning the challenges you face.
  • Expanding current well-being programs and resources.
  • Creating new programs to promote your wellness and professional fulfillment.

Committee leaders include Jennifer Berliner, MD, and Joseph Losee, MD, with executive support from Steven Shapiro, MD.

Learn More About Physician THRIVE