Stressed male doctor takes a moment for reflection

BMA raises attention to staff wellbeing during winter period

Our healthcare system is built on the foundations of quality patient care, but all of that means little if staff aren’t able to look after their own mental wellbeing too. It’s for this reason that the BMA’s Mental Health Policy Lead, Andrew Molodynski, has reminded doctors in particular to stay alert to one’s own wellbeing and seek help where necessary.

Mr Molodynski wrote: “As the days shorten and the Covid-19 pandemic persists, our wellbeing has never been more important.

“We are often seen as figures that cope and hold the stress and difficulties for others so that good patient care happens, [but] we must acknowledge that we need to look after ourselves too.

“BMA surveys have shown alarming rates of burnout, anxiety and depression among doctors and the situation is deteriorating as this year’s pressures continue.

“From medics working in emergency care, ITU, and on general wards with Covid-19 cases to those in other specialties such as psychiatry or specialist surgery, we have all seen unwelcome changes and pressures with altered work patterns, increased suffering among our patients, and an inability to provide the care we would like to and indeed need to.”

The strain being felt on staff’s mental wellbeing is a concern shared across the organisation and the country too, with just this week Chair of the BMA in Scotland, Dr Lewis Morrison, issuing a warning to the SNP Conference that we very likely to face “massive levels of burnout” among medical professionals – and particularly, among doctors.

But there are steps which can be taken too in order to help ease some of that burden.

Mr Molodynski encouraged for colleagues to look to spending time outdoors, with friends and family – however unusual of a way that may be in the current circumstances – and checking in with someone trusted.

It has been a tough year for health in 2020 and the pressures are likely to continue for some time yet. As such, taking stock and supporting oneself as best as possible is all the more important.

Mr Molodynski points to a list of services and resources which can be used to help support those struggling with their mental wellbeing, which can be found listed here.

NHE Sept/Oct 21

NHE Sept/Oct 21

Improving care for long-term conditions

Join us in our September/October edition of National Health Executive, as we explore a range of topics impacting and improving the care that we can deliver to patients, the facilities within which we deliver them, and the opportunities in the digital space to accent and evolve our care capabilities


View all videos
National Health Executive Presents

National Health Executive Presents

NHE365 Virtual Festival: Digital Healthcare

The integration of new technology, such as using virtual outpatient appointments instead of face-to-face reviews of patients in the hospital. Adapting the ways in which our NHS workers serve people has been critical in continuing to provide high-quality treatment, a positive patient experience and preventing Covid-19 transmission during the pandemic. Our healthcare sector has the potential to transform the way we continue to provide essential services while also improving patient care. But how easy is the integration of these innovations into routine NHS practice?

On the 28th of October, at the NHE365 Virtual Hospitals & Technology Enabled Care online event, we will be discussing patient flow and experience, reducing waiting times, reducing the patient backlog and increasing technology adoption. Will you be attending? 

Finger on the Pulse

Ep 14. Health messaging is a science, Professor Craig Jackson

On Episode 14 of NHE's Finger on the Pulse podcast, we're joined by Professor Craig Jackson, Professor of Occupational Health Psychology
Birmingham City University to discuss the coronavirus pandemic, the health messaging around it and how those in power have missed a trick by overlooking the key role of psychology in informing the public of restrictions, measures and the ever-changing situation

More articles...

View all