Written by Stichting Burnout on 19 May 2020 in blog English

Some employers and company doctors (bedrijfsartsen) are fond of sending you to a ggz-psychologist or psychiatrist when you complain about burnout.

However, this is principally wrong, and will leave you untreated for a long time. Reasons:

  • burnout is part of occupational medicine and occupational psychology (‘arbeids- en organisatie psychology’). So psychiatry is the wrong discipline
  • by sending you to ggz/DSM, employer wants a denial of the burnout. This is simply obtained, as burnout is not part of psychiatry. The psychiatrist or psychiatrist psychologist will NOT apply the Lesa NVAB guideline burnout including tests, but test you for psychiatric deviances. This has multiple advantages:
  • the relationship between work and your burnout is being obscured
  • the employer has no risk of ‘bezava’ anymore (google translate https://burnout.nl/behandeling/de-enorme-invloed-van-bezava-op-werkgever-en-bedrijfsarts-bij-burn-out/
  • the employer will have no treatment costs, as the ggz psychologist will declare its cost to the health insurance with a wrong diagnosis (burnout is not reimbursed by health insurance, but should be reimbursed by employer: https://www.ziektekostenverzekering.nl/dossiers/ziektekostenverzekering-burn-out
  • you will get an (unnecessary) psychiatric diagnosis including possibly medication (the ggz psychologist will do everything to choose a diagnosis of whith its treatment is reimbursed by your own health insurance)
  • because of wrong diagnosis, and because ggz psychologists know nothing about burnout and have no burnout treatment method, you will get an irrelevant treatment.
  • this fraudulent ‘gz/ggz/psychiatric’ route in case of burnout is widely practised, see amongst others https://www.volkskrant.nl/nieuws-achtergrond/ggz-aanbieder-krijgt-boete-van-vier-ton-voor-onterechte-burn-outdeclaraties~b5c740bd/, but as Netherlands is a quite fraudulent country politics will not address this.

So: instigate on applying the NVAB Lesa burnout ‘richtlijn’ (easy to google), and application of its tests. Instigate on choosing your own, burnout-specialised therapist or psychologist, to be paid by the employer. Stichting Burnout is happy to help you with this, and can also contact UWV to notify UWV of the suggested malpractice (the mental disorder route).