Samantha Batt-Rawden, Co-founder of the The Doctors' Association UK, discusses the struggles of a junior doctor and how changes in the NHS over the last 14 years has made it so much harder to do an already hard job.
In this article published in the Metro, she says "that the combination of spiralling workloads and a decimation of morale and camaraderie has been toxic for the profession."
Last year, 55% of UK doctors met the criteria for burnout and ‘emotional exhaustion’, with one in five resorting to the use of drugs or alcohol as a ‘coping strategy’. It’s hardly surprising that we are haemorrhaging doctors out of the profession, and it’s only getting worse.
So, how do we fix this? Sally suggests that we need to treat staff like human beings if we are going to have any hope of stemming the exodus of clinicians. It’s as simple as restoring some on-call rooms so we can get our heads down, and stop crashing our cars on the way home. Or it’s as basic as ensuring that junior doctors have leave for our own weddings. Honestly, at this stage, just letting us have access to now-outlawed NHS coffee overnight would be a significant morale boost.