Factors impacting health and well-being and the utilisation of supports among Australian doctors in medical specialty training

Abhary, S, Botti, Mari, Dhulia, A, Tham, C, Loh, E and Catford, J 2020, Factors impacting health and well-being and the utilisation of supports among Australian doctors in medical specialty training, BMJ Leader, doi: 10.1136/leader-2020-000227.


Title Factors impacting health and well-being and the utilisation of supports among Australian doctors in medical specialty training
Author(s) Abhary, S
Botti, MariORCID iD for Botti, Mari orcid.org/0000-0002-2782-0987
Dhulia, A
Tham, C
Loh, E
Catford, J
Journal name BMJ Leader
Publisher BMJ
Place of publication London, Eng.
Publication date 2020-12-23
ISSN 2398-631X
Summary Purpose To explore factors impacting the health and well-being of doctors undertaking various specialty training programs, and attitudes towards and utilisation of supports during their training. This is a subset of data from a larger study exploring experiences of doctors in Australian specialty training—a qualitative study of enablers, stressors and supports.MethodsIn this qualitative study, registrars in specialist training programmes in Australia were invited and interviewed between August 2015 and August 2016. Semistructured open-ended questions were used to explore topics of relevance to their workplace, training, support service utilisation and personal lives. Interviews were transcribed verbatim, deidentified and content and thematic analysis undertaken. Recruitment was ceased when data saturation was reached and no new themes emerged. Emerging key themes are reported in this studyResults17 participants were recruited (including 1 Indigenous and 1 international medical graduate). A total of six specialty training programmes, across multiple states at various locations across Australia, were represented.Common themes impacting health and well-being regarding workplace and training stressors were identified, including poor supervision, shiftwork and on-call, inability to take sick leave, bullying and harassment, college-related factors, examination preparation and work–life imbalance. Several of these were identified as having actual and perceived negative impacts on patient outcomes and safety.The majority of participants underused existing supports and were unaware of the breadth of support services available to them. Barriers to accessing these services included concerns about their confidentiality and career repercussions.ConclusionsThis first Australian pilot study highlighted many stressors and enablers in the workplace, training and personal lives of registrars. The underutilisation and barriers to access of support services were discovered. Several multisystem strategies are required and discussed in this report to address these complex issues identified as affecting the health and well-being of junior doctors.
Notes In Press
Language eng
DOI 10.1136/leader-2020-000227
Indigenous content off
HERDC Research category C1 Refereed article in a scholarly journal
Persistent URL http://hdl.handle.net/10536/DRO/DU:30146675

Document type: Journal Article
Collections: Faculty of Health
School of Nursing and Midwifery
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