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LIGHT Provider Wellness Program

The hours, pressure, fast pace and constant change associated with careers in health care can lead to unhealthy stress on providers and their families. In fact, burnout among U.S. physicians continues to increase with over 40 percent experiencing burnout at some point in their careers.

That’s why we offer our innovative LIGHT Program to all physicians, physician assistants (PA) and nurse practitioners (NP) across the Avera system. This professional program provides the support and tools needed to help reduce stress, optimize workflow, improve work-life balance and prevent burnout.

Even if providers aren't currently feeling overwhelmed by burnout, we encourage them to take advantage of the LIGHT Program with the goal of experiencing wellness in every aspect of life.

Self-assessments »

Awareness & relaxation videos »

Provider resources »

Catholic Health Association - 2017 Achievement Award

The LIGHT Program recently received national recognition in an Achievement Citation award from the Catholic Health Association (CHA). The award is presented once each year to innovative programming that changes lives.

Enhance Your Quality of Life

The LIGHT Program is a nationally recognized well-being program that offers providers and their spouses free and confidential access to resources, such as:

  • One-on-one consultations
  • Couples retreats for providers and their spouses
  • Educational courses and events
  • EMR strategies
  • Executive coaching
  • Peer strategy coaching
  • Retirement series
  • Self-assessments to identify signs of compassion fatigue, depression, alcohol abuse, anxiety, bipolar disorder, resiliency, suicide risk and trauma
  • Video resources about relaxation, guided mediation and chair yoga

LIGHT Program participants discover how to understand the signs of burnout, take an inventory of their own life and thrive in the fast-paced world of health care.

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LIGHT Strategies for Well-Being

The LIGHT Program reflects Avera’s mission to care for the whole self – body, mind and spirit. Providers and their spouses can take advantage of unique strategies to meet their specific needs, including:

  • Live strategies for living healthy physically, emotionally, professionally and spiritually
  • Improve strategies for improving resiliency skills
  • Grow strategies for growing personal and professional skills
  • Heal strategies for treating and restoring professionals to an improved quality of life
  • Treat strategies for healing work wounds and family struggles

Counseling for the Entire Family

In addition to LIGHT, all Avera employees have access to the Employee Assistance Program (EAP). Through this program, employees, their spouses and eligible dependents can benefit from confidential counseling services, at no cost (three per person each year). Learn more about EAP for providers.

Expert Guidance to Find Work-Life Balance

The LIGHT and EAP programs are guided by Program Director Mary Wolf, MS, LPC-MH. In her 20 years at Avera, she has advocated for preventive and innovative services for mental health and substance use challenges. Mary is a licensed professional counselor, a certified executive coach, an executive coach trainer and a certified life and spirituality coach.

As a counselor and coach, Mary is passionate about coaching physicians, physician assistants and nurse practitioners on topics such as leadership, transitions, grief, work pressures and family challenges. She enjoys seeing the progress and momentum that professionals make in a short period of time with coaching.

Clarissa Barnes, a hospitalist at Avera McKennan Hospital & University Health Center, serves as the Medical Director for LIGHT.

Call 605-322-HEAL or email to schedule a confidential consultation or submit a speaking or presentation request.

Contact LIGHT

Providers and their family members who want to learn more about Avera’s LIGHT Program or schedule a confidential consultation, call 605-322-HEAL or email

To submit a media or speaking engagement request, contact

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Request your free copy of Stop Physician Burnout: What To Do When Working Harder Isn’t Working by Dr. Dike Drummond, simply contact the LIGHT Program.

View a digital version of MED Magazine to read the LIGHT Program feature in an article about physician burnout.

Employee Assistance Program Guide for Providers

Download this guide to learn more about how providers and their families can benefit from our private and confidential Employee Assistance Program.

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Avera is a health ministry rooted in the Gospel. Our mission is to make a positive impact in the lives and health of persons and communities by providing quality services guided by Christian values.

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