The Government has recently confirmed an extra £3 billion for the NHS to prepare for a possible second wave of Covid-19 later in the year.
Medical Protection Society (MPS) urges the government to allocate some of these funds to implement a strategy that support doctors’ mental wellbeing in order to avoid huge numbers either leaving the profession or suffering in silence with psychological injuries.
The organisation has continuously called for a nationwide plan which supports doctors’ mental wellbeing after the pandemic, including specialist support for those struggling with PTSD, alongside measures to ensure the system has capacity, and research into the impact of the pandemic on doctors’ mental wellbeing.
Dr Pallavi Bradshaw, Medicolegal Lead, Risk Prevention at MPS, said:
“While the announcement of further funds to tackle Coronavirus is welcomed, the government needs to specifically allocate some of the funds to implement measures which support doctors’ mental wellbeing.
“Many healthcare workers that have worked throughout this pandemic will suffer severe consequences as a result of accumulated stress and exhaustion which can result in conditions such as PTSD, grief or moral injury, distress and fear of reprisal; and most of them would be a at risk of burnout against a backdrop of an already burnt out workforce.
“This is the reason why we are urging the government to start planning and dedicate some of the funds announced to support the mental wellbeing of doctors who have seen the biggest health crisis in their career.
“There needs to be a nationwide funded plan which ensures that hospitals have enough capacity to allow for doctors who need support to take time off and access specialist support, without worrying about the extra workload for colleagues.
“Covid-19 will continue to bring pressures and complications and we must avoid doctors leaving the profession in mass as a result of burnout and other mental wellbeing issues arising from this pandemic. We must care and establish a plan to support doctors’ mental wellbeing so they can continue to care for us.”
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About Medical Protection Society
MPS is the world’s leading protection organisation for doctors, dentists and healthcare professionals. We protect and support the professional interests of more than 300,000 members around the world. Membership provides access to expert advice and support and can also provide, depending on the type of membership required, the right to request indemnity for any complaints or claims arising from professional practice.
Our in-house experts assist with the wide range of legal and ethical problems that arise from professional practice. This can include clinical negligence claims, complaints, medical and dental council inquiries, legal and ethical dilemmas, disciplinary procedures, inquests and fatal accident inquiries.
Our philosophy is to support safe practice in medicine and dentistry by helping to avert problems in the first place. We do this by promoting risk management through our workshops, E-learning, clinical risk assessments, publications, conferences, lectures and presentations.
MPS is not an insurance company. All the benefits of membership of MPS are discretionary as set out in the Memorandum and Articles of Association.