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Member Support and Wellbeing
 

As doctors, it can be challenging to balance the demands of a busy profession with family and personal commitments. We too, like the rest of society can struggle with depression, anxiety and poor mental health.
 
RANZCOG is committed to providing support and resources for our members to practice self-care, discuss challenges openly and seek help when it’s needed. To take care of others, you must first take care of yourself.

Find out what we're doing to support our members’ health and wellbeing, and the services, networks and resources available to our Fellows, trainees, specialist international medical graduates and immediate family members below.

RANZCOG has signed up to the Every Doctor, Every Setting Medical Framework, which is guiding coordinated action on the mental health of doctors and medical students. 


Our Services and Resources

 

Member Support Program (EAP)

RANZCOG recognises that our Members can face stressful situations, both in their personal lives and in their demanding yet rewarding professions. This can sometimes result in difficulty maintaining self-care and a healthy work/life balance, which can affect your physical and mental health.

To take care of others, you must first take care of yourself. Being proactive about your mental health and wellbeing is important for your professional and personal lives. This involves recognising the signs and seeking informal or professional support when needed.

Our Member Support Program, Converge, provides confidential support to RANZCOG Trainees, SIMGs and Fellows (and their immediate family members) across Australia and Aotearoa/New Zealand.
 
Through Converge, you can access qualified and experienced counsellors on a range of issues including those set out below.



All sessions are entirely confidential, and the College pays for your first four sessions within any 12-month period. Sessions may be face-to-face, by video conference or by phone.

You can book a counselling session by calling:
  • 1300 687 327 (Australia)
  • 0800 666 367 (Aotearoa/New Zealand)

See 'What to expect when you call Converge' which provides information about the process and questions asked when initially calling to book a session. 

To book a session online or find out more visit the Converge website.

For any queries, please contact our Wellbeing Coordinator, Clare Wells on [email protected]
 

Trainee and Supervisor Support

RANZCOG's Training Support Unit is a confidential and impartial service for trainees, SIMGs and supervisors.

To find out how the unit can support you, please visit our Trainee Support FAQs webpage

RANZCOG recognises that trainees and SIMGs may experience periods of professional and personal difficulty. Coping with the demands of a busy profession, developing skills, building knowledge as well as balancing family and personal commitments can be challenging. 

The College also recognises the importance of supporting supervisors, who ensure trainees and SIMGs receive vital learning opportunities and are given adequate time to develop their skills.

To learn more please visit: Training Support

Trainees, meet your trainee representatives here.
 

Policies & Procedures
 

You can use the Policies & Procedures search tool for locating up-to-date policies, including:

  • Exceptional Circumstances, Special Consideration and Reconsideration Policy and Procedure
  • Bullying, Harassment and Discrimination Policy
  • Trainee in Difficulty Policy
  • Conflict of Interest Policy
  • Complaints Policy
  • Appeals Procedures

 

Presentations
 

RANZCOG Annual Scientific Meeting presentations

Mental Health in the Medical Profession - Prof Steve Robson (2019)
Emily's Gumboots - Merv Keane (2019)



Having your own GP

 

Why have your own GP?


The Doctors Health Advisory Service has found that fewer than 40 per cent of doctors have an identifiable GP. Many who do are consulting their spouse or practice partner. Many have not consulted that doctor for years.

‘We can see the value of patients having a personal physician who knows their history and gives personal care, but, in a strange twist of thinking, we don't see that this applies to ourselves and our families ... So take your own best advice. Find a GP you trust and let them manage your health care. Encourage your colleagues to do the same. And let another doctor use their time and objectivity to manage your family's health. This will free you to do what you do best - concentrate on the health of your patients.’ - Having our own GP, Doctors Health Advisory Service 

Visit DRS4DRS for information for your annual GP check-up.

Click on the next section to find a local GP, psychologist or psychiatrist who specialises in seeing doctors as patients.


Find a local health professional

See below to find a local GP, psychologist or psychiatrist who specialises in seeing doctors as patients.

Find a psychiatrist on the RANZCP website: under 'patient groups', select the dropdown option, ‘doctors, psychiatrists or medical students’

NSW: AMA NSW Doctors for Colleagues 

NSW + Brisbane psychologists: Doctors Health Advisory Service Find a psychologist webpage

Qld GPs and psychologists: Doctors’ Health Queensland Find a health professional webpage

SA GPs list: Doctors’ Health SA Find a GP webpage

WA clinical psychologists, psychiatrists and GPs listing: Doctors Health Advisory Service WA Doctors for doctors list

Vic: Contact the Victorian Doctors Health Program for its list of preferred GPs, psychologists and psychiatrists

Tas: Contact the Tasmanian Doctors Health Program for its list of preferred GPs, psychologists and psychiatrists

NT: Visit Doctors Health NT Wellbeing page: login required

Aotearoa/NZ: DHAS NZ are compiling a list of preferred treatment providers. Please call DHAS NZ on 0800 471 2654 if you’re seeking a treating practitioner.
 


Adverse Outcomes 

 

Articles on Supporting Yourself and Others


Medical complications and adverse events happen. The support you receive after an adverse outcome can be crucial to maintaining your wellbeing. Please see the resources below on ways to support yourself or others after an adverse outcome. 

Coping with adverse outcomes in O&G – O&G Magazine article by Dr Rachel Collings and Dr Michael Williams

  • Includes a toolbox for dealing with adverse outcomes for short, medium and long term


Adverse events: when your care does harm – O&G Magazine article by Dr Denys Court

  • Includes the ASSIST ME model developed by the National Advocacy Unit, Quality & Patient Safety Directorate in Ireland
  • Provides practical self-care information and pointers

A notification was made about me: A practitioner’s experience - video by Ahpra




External Services and Resources

 

Health and Wellbeing Referral Options


Australia

Headspace: providing support and resources to strengthen your ability to manage your mental health. 

PANDA (Perinatal Anxiety and Depression Australia): supports women, men and families across Australia affected by anxiety and depression during pregnancy and in the first year of parenthood.

Beyondblue: working to improve mental health and prevent suicide so that all people in Australia can achieve their best possible mental health.

SANE: a national freecall helpline providing information, advice and referral to anyone concerned about mental illness.

Lifeline Australia: provides free counselling for suicide prevention and mental health via telephone, online and video for anyone affected by suicidal thoughts, 24/7.

Alcohol and Other Drugs: practical ‘next steps' for information or support services regarding alcohol or drugs.  


Aotearoa/New Zealand

Alcohol Drug Helpline:  information, advice and guidance to help you care for yourself or someone else impacted by alcohol or other drugs.

Lifeline Aotearoa: free and confidential community helplines answered by qualified counsellors and trained volunteers - available 24 hours a day, seven days a week.

Mental Health Foundation of New Zealand: a comprehensive list of helplines and services available in New Zealand that offer support, information and help.
 

Tools and digital resources

The Essential Network (TEN): Developed by health professionals for health professionals, TEN provides specialist, individualised mental health advice and triaged support to connect health workers to the help they need:
  • TEN app available to download to your phone
  • self guided mental health screening
  • evidence-based tools and resources
  • peer support
  • digital mental health programs
  • connection to one-on-one clinical care

AMA Fatigue Risk Assessment Tool (online resource)

Smiling Mind: a unique web and app-based program developed by psychologists and educators to help bring balance and mindfulness to people's lives.

Black Dog Institute: integrating research studies, education programs, digital tools and apps, clinical services, and public resources to discover evidence-based solutions and resources to support better mental health for all Australians. Includes an online clinic.

Shift: an app to safeguard the mental health of JMOs. A free, easy-to-use app designed to help you monitor, improve and maintain your mental health and wellbeing while managing the demands of your profession. Search ‘Shift Black Dog Institute’ on the App Store or Google Play.

​RACGP, Keeping the Doctor Alive: a self-care guidebook for medical practitioners (PDF)

MindSpot: free online assessment and treatment for stress, anxiety, depression, trauma and other mental health conditions. 

 

Practitioner Advisory Services

 


Australia

DRS4DRS: providing tailored support, online resources and referral services for medical professionals and medical students. 

Australian Indigenous Doctors' Association: supporting Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander doctors and advocating for a culturally safe healthcare system.

Doctors Health Advisory Service Australia: ensuring every doctor has ready access to health care. 

Health Care Worker Wellbeing Centre (Victoria): provides support for people in clinical and non-clinical roles across all health care settings.

Victorian Doctors Health Program: a free, confidential service for Victorian and Tasmanian doctors who have health concerns including stress, mental illness and substance use.

CRANA: Crana's Bush Support Services provides free confidential 24/7 telephone psychological support for all rural and remote health workers and their families.

 

Health commissions

Health Care Complaints Commission - New South Wales
Health Complaints Commissioner - Victoria 
Office of the Health Ombudsman - Queensland 
Health and Community Services Complaints Commissioner - South Australia
Health and Disability Services Complaints Office – Western Australia
Health and Community Services Complaints Commission - Northern Territory
Human Rights Commission – Australian Capital Territory
Health Complaints Commissioner – Tasmania 



Aotearoa/New Zealand

Doctors Health Advisory Service NZ: ensuring every doctor has ready access to health care. 

Health and Disability Commissioner NZ: information if a complaint is made against you. 

NZ Resident Doctors Association: health and wellbeing information and resources for resident doctors. 

Medical Council of New Zealand - support for doctors

Te ORA: Māori Medical Practitioners Assocations


 


Medical Association support



Australia

The Australian Medical Association advocates on behalf of the medical profession and the public, operating at a federal level and within each state and territory.

AMA ACT 
AMA NSW
AMA NT
AMA Qld
AMA SA
AMA Tas 
AMA Vic
AMA WA
 

 

Aotearoa/New Zealand

The New Zealand Medical Association (NZMA) is a pan-professional medical organisation representing the collective interests of all doctors. 

NZMA Member Advisory Service
 


Pacific region

Pasifika Medical Association: a network of health professionals working together to meet the health needs of Pacific people in the region.


 

Unmoderated Peer Support Groups

Pandemic Kindness Movement
Respected, evidence-informed resources and links to services to support the wellbeing of the health workforce, curated by clinicians across Australia.

Hand-n-hand
A closed Facebook group that provides a national interdisciplinary peer support network for Australian healthcare workers. Fill out the form here for peer support options including one-on-one support, joining a peer support group or organising a facilitator to provide peer support to your team. 
 

 

Mandatory reporting


Mandatory reporting

Seeking help can often instil fear into medical practitioners and raise questions about mandatory reporting.
 

Australia

The requirements to make a mandatory notification changed on 1 March 2020. The changes aimed to support health practitioners to seek help about their health without fearing a mandatory notification.

Download AHPRA's mandatory notification guidelines here.

AHPRA encourages practitioners to seek the help you need – a health issue rarely needs a mandatory notification. The AHPRA website states that 'A treating practitioner is only required to make a mandatory notification in very specific circumstances, when there is a substantial risk of harm to the public (a very high threshold for reporting risk of harm to the public) or in cases of sexual misconduct.'

The Medical Board of Australia website contains additional information on how it manages notifications.
 

Aotearoa/New Zealand

Please visit the Medical Council of New Zealand website for more information on mandatory reporting. 
 

Click here to view our Wellbeing Position Statement. 

Click here to view the joint Wellbeing Charter for Doctors


More information


Carly.jpg

Carly Moorfield
Training Support Liaison
Email[email protected]
Phone: +61 8 6102 2096




​Clare Wells
Wellbeing Coordinator
Email[email protected]
Phone: +61 3 9114 3939


 

Trainees

Meet your Trainee representatives
 


 

Get social

Follow us on our dedicated wellbeing accounts:
 
Instagram: @ranzcogwellbeing
Twitter: @ranzcogwellness

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