As the COVID-19 pandemic continues to take its toll across our domains and as many healthcare systems recover and move into a “new normal”, Medical Leaders and practitioners are wearing the burden of the emotional and mental impacts of this public health crisis on top of the daily pressures of work. Hence it is never more pertinent that all medical practitioners acknowledge the importance of our mental health and wellbeing and be kind and civil to one another.
And what better way than through supporting Crazy Socks for Docs Day on Friday 4 June – which raises awareness of the mental health of all doctors and health practitioners around the world. Fit and well health practitioners are crucial to deliver quality healthcare for the whole community. It is paramount Medical Leaders are acutely aware of how staff culture and interaction can impact on patient safety.
The College believes it is imperative all medical practitioners show tolerance and forgiveness for those around them who are strained and experiencing a great amount of stress – no matter the situation. Be more attentive to your colleagues, the situation at hand, differing opinions and expectations.
In its fifth year, the Crazy Socks for Docs movement was created by the College’s Associate Fellow Dr Geoff Toogood to address the stigma associated with mental health and to make it “ok for a doctor not to be ok”. Crazy Socks for Docs works to normalise the conversation about mental welfare, while creating a safe place to seek help.
This year, the Crazy Socks for Docs Day virtual forum, starting at 7.45am, will discuss tackling stigma, building safe places to seek help and the value of storytelling in helping yourself and others. The panel includes:
- Dame Clare Gerada NHS PH, Medical Director and Chair of Doctors in Distress – Currently Clare not only still leads NHS Practitioner Health but has, in 2020 established a service for problem gamblers; Chairs the newly formed registered charity, Doctors in Distress, is now co-chair of the NHS Assembly.
- Dr Dinesh Palipana OAM – the first quadriplegic medical intern in Queensland, and the second person to graduate medical school with quadriplegia in Australia. Dinesh is a doctor, lawyer, disability advocate, and researcher, based on the Gold Coast.
- Dr Mukesh Haikerwal AC – a Melbourne GP who supports the not-for-profit organisation Her Heart and is a strong advocate for better working conditions for medical staff.
- Indrani Tharmanason & Graeme Port – the proud parents of their daughter, Tasha, who was a beautiful, courageous, skilled and compassionate third year junior doctor, who died of depression on 4 June 2020.
To register for the forum click HERE.
So whether they are covered in bananas or llamas, poodles or your favourite footy player, stripes or splatters, get your whackiest socks out of your bottom draw and support this important cause crucial to our healthcare industry.
Author: Felicity Gallagher
3rd June 2021
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