Supporting doctors under increasing pressure

On 8 April 2016, leading voices in the medical profession came together at the Royal College of Physicians to discuss supporting doctors under pressure, in an RMBF roundtable event supported by the Medical & Dental Defence Union of Scotland (MDDUS).

RMBF Chair Prof Roger Jones led the discussion, and our President Prof Parveen Kumar, CEO Steve Crone, and Dr Richard Stevens, author of The Vital Signs, were joined by a wide-ranging cohort of medical leaders and practitioners. Prof Maureen Baker, Chair of the Royal College of General Practitioners; Dr Fuzz Ahmed, a GP in Manchester and RMBF Volunteer; Dr Michelle Drage, CEO of Londonwide LMCs; Dr Debbie Cohen, Director of Student Support at Cardiff University School of Medicine, and Medical Schools Council representative; and Dr John Holden, joint head of MDDUS’ Medical Division.

The findings from our What’s Up Doc? campaign survey, showing that many doctors struggle to cope with work pressures, framed the context for the discussion. Issues covered included the stigma of asking for help, the importance of early intervention, and how leaders, employers and professional bodies can create a caring, safe environment for doctors in practice.

The discussion also highlighted cultural shifts in the medical profession that have left doctors more isolated and unsupported at work in recent years.

A full report on the roundtable appears in the May issue of Pulse magazine. Our thanks to MDDUS for helping to make this event possible.