The GMC has published a new report, which highlights three essential needs which must be met in order to ensure wellbeing and motivation among doctors, and to minimise workplace stress. The Caring for Doctors, Caring for Patients report identifies autonomy/control, a sense of belonging, and the need to experience effectiveness and valued outcomes, such as high-quality care, as essential core needs.
Among several recommendations to meet these needs, the report highlights the following initiatives:
- Mechanisms to influence the culture of their healthcare organisations, and decisions about how medicine is delivered.
- UK-wide minimum standards for basic facilities, including places and time for doctors to rest and sleep, access to nutritious food, and implementation of the BMA’s Fatigue and Facilities charter.
- Full implementation of the BMA’s and NHS Employers’ Good Rostering Guide.
- A review of team working and ensuring that all doctors are working in effectively functioning teams.
- A programme to ensure healthcare environments have nurturing cultures enabling high-quality, continually improving and compassionate patient care and staff wellbeing.
- A programme to deploy and develop alternative roles to enable doctors to support doctors to return to work after a break in practice.
- A review of new technologies to increase efficiency.
- A programme of process improvements that increase productivity.
In the report, the GMC says: “Our call to action is for all NHS leaders to lead with compassion by implementing all the recommendations in this report. Those NHS organisations with cultures of compassion promote fairness, and foster individual, team and organisational wellbeing. And they meet doctors’ needs for autonomy, belonging and competence at work, which in turn improves productivity and efficiency, and better promotes the wellbeing of the patients and communities they serve.
“That is the challenge and the imperative for leaders and doctors in all NHS and primary care organisations across the UK."