How to Use Maslow's "Hierarchy of Needs" For Staff Burnout

3min read

The healthcare industry tends to have stressful jobs. For this reason, the employees in medical billing companies tend to suffer burnout. A condition of emotional, mental and physical exhaustion. This can prove to be a problematic situation for the organization. In case the patients are not in sound health and mind, the parents cannot be treated effectively. This would result in adverse effects on both the company revenue and reputation. Therefore, it is an essential problem for the hospital to work through.

There are various techniques present that can be applied by medical billing companies to treat these issues. Amongst these approaches is animal therapy and renewal rooms. However, a company does not necessarily have to apply such techniques. They can consider easier ways that revolve around the basic needs of their employees.

Most of us are well aware of Maslow's "Hierarchy of needs". Certain studies have labeled its use as a way to fight burnout. Abraham Maslow divided the needs of workers into several levels. Represented with the help of a pyramid, there is a certain sequence to be followed. The needs at the bottom level should be fulfilled before the company considers the higher levels. This method can be applied to physician or nurse burnout through the use of its five levels.

Physiological Needs

This considers the mental and physical health of the employees. If the physicians and staff suffer from depression, their job stress will amplify it. A patient in pain or dying can trigger further emotional turmoil, pushing them towards burnout. Considering the hectic schedule in medical billing companies, it is not a surprise that the staff does not have enough time. They are unable to have a healthy and balanced diet. Such issues can further deteriorate their condition. Therefore, it is important to offer them with on-site resources. These can help the staff to have easy access to their various needs. Including freshwater, healthy food and a comfortable place for rest and relaxation.

Security Needs

It is vital for the staff to feel secure in an environment where they are working. The absence of such security can cause further stress to the employees. Along with such security, employees also expect job security. This is because an employee would be more relaxed while working if they are sure that their job is safe. In order to cater to such needs, the medical billing company must ensure that employees are properly trained. This training is in regard to de-escalating violent situations that may occur with patients. Moreover, it will also enable them to move and support patients safely without causing any injury to themselves. The company can also focus on hiring additional security and staff members that ensure a safe environment. This would help them to feel more relaxed and thus, perform their job with higher efficiency.

Social Needs

Respect is necessary for employees to perform effectively. This is applicable to physicians and nurses as well since they wish to feel respected for their daily struggles. They wish to have this respect from both higher-ups and patients as well as from their colleagues. A common occurrence is nurses feeling disrespected by doctors or female doctors receiving poor treatment. To tackle these needs, the organization must take steps that create a more respectful environment. They should also address any technological issues that are taking place as soon as possible. To achieve such an environment, a company can introduce policies that ban any kind of bullying from taking place. It will also be helpful if the consequences of such issues are discussed. That'll instill the importance of respect within the company and keep any social issues from occurring.


Physicians and nurses may feel unappreciated for the work they undertake. This typically leads to frustration, sadness, and demotivation. They would not be able to enjoy their achievements through joy and celebration. Employees also tend to feel unappreciated when their salary is less than the work they have to carry out. Without any proper acknowledgment of their efforts, the staff would be unwilling to perform their best. They might focus on simply achieving the bare minimum out of disinterest. Appreciation also brings into account socialization. Interactions with peers can positively affect the moods of employees. A salary raise is not the only way to appreciate someone for their hard work. It can also be achieved through public appreciation. In order to improve the peer connection, the company can create spaces in the hospital. The staff can easily relax here and interact with each other.


The fulfillment of all previous needs can result in a combined goal for the staff. This objective can revolve around the patients which is advantageous for the company. In order to keep its performance high, the company can encourage more interactive time. With more face-to-face time, the day-to-day practice will improve resulting in a better revenue cycle. A more supportive environment can also lead to skill expansion and eventually better treatment for patients.

By addressing these important needs, a medical billing company can minimize the possibility of burnout. Their staff will be less likely to suffer any mental, emotional and physical turmoil with such implementation.

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5min read

Patriarchy Stress Disorder is A Real Thing and this Psychologist Is Helping Women Overcome It

For decades, women have been unknowingly suffering from PSD and intergenerational trauma, but now Dr. Valerie Rein wants women to reclaim their power through mind, body and healing tools.

As women, no matter how many accomplishments we have or how successful we look on the outside, we all occasionally hear that nagging internal voice telling us to do more. We criticize ourselves more than anyone else and then throw ourselves into the never-ending cycle of self-care, all in effort to save ourselves from crashing into this invisible internal wall. According to psychologist, entrepreneur and author, Dr. Valerie Rein, these feelings are not your fault and there is nothing wrong with you— but chances are you definitely suffering from Patriarchy Stress Disorder.

Patriarchy Stress Disorder (PSD) is defined as the collective inherited trauma of oppression that forms an invisible inner barrier to women's happiness and fulfillment. The term was coined by Rein who discovered a missing link between trauma and the effects that patriarchal power structures have had on certain groups of people all throughout history up until the present day. Her life experience, in addition to research, have led Rein to develop a deeper understanding of the ways in which men and women are experiencing symptoms of trauma and stress that have been genetically passed down from previously oppressed generations.

What makes the discovery of this disorder significant is that it provides women with an answer to the stresses and trauma we feel but cannot explain or overcome. After being admitted to the ER with stroke-like symptoms one afternoon, when Rein noticed the left side of her body and face going numb, she was baffled to learn from her doctors that the results of her tests revealed that her stroke-like symptoms were caused by stress. Rein was then left to figure out what exactly she did for her clients in order for them to be able to step into the fullness of themselves that she was unable to do for herself. "What started seeping through the tears was the realization that I checked all the boxes that society told me I needed to feel happy and fulfilled, but I didn't feel happy or fulfilled and I didn't feel unhappy either. I didn't feel much of anything at all, not even stress," she stated.

Photo Courtesy of Dr. Valerie Rein

This raised the question for Rein as to what sort of hidden traumas women are suppressing without having any awareness of its presence. In her evaluation of her healing methodology, Rein realized that she was using mind, body and trauma healing tools with her clients because, while they had never experienced a traumatic event, they were showing the tell-tale symptoms of trauma which are described as a disconnect from parts of ourselves, body and emotions. In addition to her personal evaluation, research at the time had revealed that traumatic experiences are, in fact, passed down genetically throughout generations. This was Rein's lightbulb moment. The answer to a very real problem that she, and all women, have been experiencing is intergenerational trauma as a result of oppression formed under the patriarchy.

Although Rein's discovery would undoubtably change the way women experience and understand stress, it was crucial that she first broaden the definition of trauma not with the intention of catering to PSD, but to better identify the ways in which trauma presents itself in the current generation. When studying psychology from the books and diagnostic manuals written exclusively by white men, trauma was narrowly defined as a life-threatening experience. By that definition, not many people fit the bill despite showing trauma-like symptoms such as disconnections from parts of their body, emotions and self-expression. However, as the field of psychology has expanded, more voices have been joining the conversations and expanding the definition of trauma based on their lived experience. "I have broadened the definition to say that any experience that makes us feel unsafe psychically or emotionally can be traumatic," stated Rein. By redefining trauma, people across the gender spectrum are able to find validation in their experiences and begin their journey to healing these traumas not just for ourselves, but for future generations.

While PSD is not experienced by one particular gender, as women who have been one of the most historically disadvantaged and oppressed groups, we have inherited survival instructions that express themselves differently for different women. For some women, this means their nervous systems freeze when faced with something that has been historically dangerous for women such as stepping into their power, speaking out, being visible or making a lot of money. Then there are women who go into fight or flight mode. Although they are able to stand in the spotlight, they pay a high price for it when their nervous system begins to work in a constant state of hyper vigilance in order to keep them safe. These women often find themselves having trouble with anxiety, intimacy, sleeping or relaxing without a glass of wine or a pill. Because of this, adrenaline fatigue has become an epidemic among high achieving women that is resulting in heightened levels of stress and anxiety.

"For the first time, it makes sense that we are not broken or making this up, and we have gained this understanding by looking through the lens of a shared trauma. All of these things have been either forbidden or impossible for women. A woman's power has always been a punishable offense throughout history," stated Rein.

Although the idea of having a disorder may be scary to some and even potentially contribute to a victim mentality, Rein wants people to be empowered by PSD and to see it as a diagnosis meant to validate your experience by giving it a name, making it real and giving you a means to heal yourself. "There are still experiences in our lives that are triggering PSD and the more layers we heal, the more power we claim, the more resilience we have and more ability we have in staying plugged into our power and happiness. These triggers affect us less and less the more we heal," emphasized Rein. While the task of breaking intergenerational transmission of trauma seems intimidating, the author has flipped the negative approach to the healing journey from a game of survival to the game of how good can it get.

In her new book, Patriarchy Stress Disorder: The Invisible Barrier to Women's Happiness and Fulfillment, Rein details an easy system for healing that includes the necessary tools she has sourced over 20 years on her healing exploration with the pioneers of mind, body and trauma resolution. Her 5-step system serves to help "Jailbreakers" escape the inner prison of PSD and other hidden trauma through the process of Waking Up in Prison, Meeting the Prison Guards, Turning the Prison Guards into Body Guards, Digging the Tunnel to Freedom and Savoring Freedom. Readers can also find free tools on Rein's website to help aid in their healing journey and exploration.

"I think of the book coming out as the birth of a movement. Healing is not women against men– it's women, men and people across the gender spectrum, coming together in a shared understanding that we all have trauma and we can all heal."