Looking after yourself and your patients

Paul Hayes

26/09/2019 3:47:26 PM

With doctors’ health more important than ever, the upcoming GP19 conference offers GPs the chance to examine their own wellbeing.

Stressed doctor
When the WHO recognised burnout as a medical condition earlier this year, it likely just confirmed what most health practitioners already know.

‘Being a GP is a bloody tough gig. It’s the hardest job in medicine.’
That is leader of the Australian Greens, Richard Di Natale, speaking at the recent launch of the RACGP’s 2019 General Practice: Health of the Nation report, which focused on GP wellbeing.
As a former GP himself, Senator Di Natale knows what he is talking about.
‘You’re involved in some of the most intimate moments in people’s lives. Telling someone who’s been trying to conceive a child for the first time that they’re pregnant or, alternatively, that they’re not pregnant after years and years of struggle. The death of a parent or a loved one, the death of a child.
‘And this is a heavy burden that all of you have to endure each and every day.’
GPs know they have a tough job. When the World Health Organization (WHO) recognised burnout as a medical condition earlier this year, it likely just confirmed what most health practitioners already know.
But what doctors don’t always know, however, is what to do about looking after themselves when the job takes its often-heavy toll.
This year’s General Practice: Health of the Nation found GPs are avoiding or delaying seeking their own healthcare for a range of issues, from being uncomfortable receiving care from other GPs to concerns about being reported to regulatory bodies.
Whatever the reason for not seeking care, most GPs would agree more needs to be done to ensure their wellbeing.
GP19’s GP wellbeing: Looking after myself and looking after my patients will be held on Wednesday 23 October. This interactive active learning module (ALM) is designed to allow participants to explore evidence-based strategies to optimise their own wellbeing. The workshop will have a grounding in mindfulness techniques and a focus of compassion to self, others and patients.
Presenters include:

  • Dr Ashlea Broomfield – a GP with a special interest in doctor wellbeing
  • Dr Michael de Manincor – post-doctoral research fellow in mind–body lifestyle therapies and integrative medicine at NICM Health Research Institute
  • Dr Carolyn Ee – Chair of the RACGP Specific Interests Integrative Medicine network
The full GP19 program is available on the conference website.

doctor health GP wellbeing GP19 mental health


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Dr Jitendra Natverlal Parikh   1/10/2019 10:06:56 PM

No one can disagree We need research on why it is happenning May be we know the natural history of the disease leading to procrastination in seeking care .May be the fear of medical board making you as impaired doctor. May be the financial burden of taking time off work with no income say after major surgery .Most GPs prone to sickness intheir 80 s know that most can not get adequate insurance and so on There is nothing like caring and sharing whenever possible Privacy and confidentiality has destroyed happiness for many of us
I have no solutions however