With menopause affecting up to half of us – 3.905 billion across the world – and menopausal women being the fastest growing demographic group in the global workforce, we believe it is crucial to support doctors going through the menopause so that they can continue to practice for longer.

As of March 2020, 79.2% of the healthcare workforce working for the Health Service Executive (HSE) are female. The Medical Council of Ireland annual report of 2020 shows that 44% of the workforce are female, growing 1% year on year. In 2020, for the first time there were 5% more females than male doctors in the 20-35 age group. However, there is a steep decline in the number of female doctors in practice from 46 years of age onwards. While there may be many reasons for this, we wanted to know if menopause could be one of them. 

Through our “Supporting doctors through menopause” campaign, Medical Protection has surveyed members to find out their experiences of the menopause. Based on that feedback, we are making a range of policy recommendations with the aim of supporting female doctors struggling with menopause symptoms. We are calling for better training and education around menopause and its symptoms for managers and senior leaders, and asking healthcare organisations to consider flexible working arrangements to support female doctors to stay in the workforce for longer.

Role of Medical Protection

MPS also has a role to play. As a mutual organisation, it is vital that we listen to and care for members – 52% of whom are female. We provide members with help to support their wellbeing and we campaign on behalf of members to promote reforms that would make a positive difference. The results of our survey on the menopause strongly suggest that more needs to be done to support those struggling with menopause symptoms. We also offer support with our members’ wellbeing and we have made our 24/7 confidential counselling service available for those struggling with the menopause.

Read about our proposals

For full information on the policy recommendations that we are making read the policy document PDF linked below.

Promote the campaign

You can get involved by helping create awareness of the need for more support for female doctors who may be struggling with menopause symptoms so that they can continue to stay on the workforce and treat patients for longer.