Reform AHPRA & Medical Board to stop bullying culture from harming our caring doctors
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Medical bullying is prevalent and very serious. It damages our professional integrity and confidence. The victimised doctors have to endure permanent psychological harm which then affects their ability to care for their patients. Some doctors were pushed to depression, self-harm and suicides. The news of doctor mental stress and suicides have caught the public attention, with SBS Insight broadcasting this issue on 20 June 2017.
Various organisations including the professional colleges, the Australian Medical Association (AMA), Health Professionals Australia Reform Association (HPARA), AHPRA and the Medical Board have responded with calls to stop medical bullying, harassment and victimisation.
The recent events with AHPRA and Medical Board raise serious concerns about the way these regulatory bodies handle vexatious complaints and how they have failed us in stopping medical bullying culture from harming our doctors. Ultimately, this will affect doctors’ ability to care for their patients and drive up the cost of medical care.
We strongly believe AHPRA’s claim that ‘vexatious complaints are very rare’ is wrong.
There is good evidence linking investigation process by regulatory bodies and doctor suicide.
To date, AHPRA has not effectively implemented many of the Senate recommendations on identifying and dealing with vexatious complaints, and many doctors are still suffering under AHPRA investigative process.
We need the Australian Commonwealth, State & Territory governments to urgently intervene to reform AHPRA and the Medical Board.
And we need your support to petition this matter to our government.
Please read our regular updates on this matter and keep sharing with people who care until we see reforms within AHPRA and the Medical Board that will effectively stop this kind of bullying activities.
Our caring doctors deserve protection from professional and psychological harm.
In memory of some of the many doctors who passed away during their professional life:
- Dr Chloe Abbott, physician-in-training from Sydney, NSW
- Dr Andrew Bryant, gastroenterologist from Brisbane, Queensland
- Prof Fung Yee Chan, a Maternal Fetal Medicine specialist from Brisbane, Queensland
- Dr Linda Dadds, an anaesthetist from Adelaide, South Australia
- Dr John Moutzouris, from Sydney, NSW
- Dr Greg De Patter, psychiatrist-in-training from Melbourne, Victoria
- Dr Emil Popovic, a neurosurgeon from Melbourne, Victoria. His letter to the authorities before his departure.
- Dr B A S Russell, GP from Western Australia
- Dr Owen Williams, psychiatrist-in-training from Melbourne, Victoria
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