National Conference focuses on doctors’ mental health and wellbeing

7 Jun 2017

Dr John Zorbas, Chair, AMACDT, led a panel of experts to discuss the issues surrounding doctors’ health and wellbeing at AMA National Conference. Following on from Minister Hunt’s welcome announcement of dedicated funding to support doctors’ mental health and reduce the incidence of suicide in the medical profession, the session showcased a range of initiatives that are in place to improve doctors’ mental health and wellbeing and explored what strategies were required to further improve doctors’ mental health.

“Mandatory reporting comes up time and time again as a key barrier to doctors who are unwell getting help from their treating doctor,” commented Dr Zorbas. “The obligations to report are different in different states and territories. In Western Australia there is an exemption under which a treating doctor is exempt from mandatory reporting a doctor patient. This exemption should be considered for adoption across Australia to encourage doctors to seek health care early when they need it.”

Panel members included:

  • Dr Janette Randall, Chair, Doctors’ Health Services Pty Ltd
  • Dr Bavahuna Manoharan, AMA Queensland, Resilience on the Run Progam
  • Ms Fiona Shand, Research Fellow, Black Dog Institute
  • Dr Kairi Kõlves, Principal Research Fellow, Australian Institute for Suicide Research and Prevention
  • Dr Anjali Dhulia, Director Medical Services and Quality, Monash Health
  • Ms Marie Jepson, Executive Director, The Tristan Jepson Memorial Foundation

Watch this session from the 2017 AMA National Conference

If you need support the following services are confidential and available 24 hours, seven days a week:

  • Lifeline Australia 13 11 14
  • Suicide Call Back Service 1300 659 467
  • Beyond Blue 1300 22 4636

Confidential doctors’ health advisory and referral services are available across Australia on the following help-lines:

  • New South Wales and the Australian Capital Territory (02) 9437 6552
  • Victoria and Tasmania (03) 9495 6011
  • South Australia and the Northern Territory (08) 8366 0250
  • Queensland (07) 3833 4352
  • Western Australia (08) 9321 3098

Visit to find out more.