There is a constant demand on general practitioners to care for themselves as well as their patients.
General practitioners are susceptible to stress related illness due to personal vulnerabilities they may have before embarking on a medical career, the rigours of medical training, and the constant stresses of general practice.
Stressors can include pressure of complex high-needs patients, understaffing, high demand, difficulty to separate work from home life, isolation, complaints and threat of litigation.
Research has found that the characteristics that lead general practitioners to take risks with their own self care are often the same qualities that make them good general practitioners. While general practitioners may be susceptible to similar stress, each one needs support in an individual way. The same solution will not suit everyone.
The College promotes self-care as an essential element of general practice and supports general practitioners to care for themselves by recognising their strengths and their vulnerabilities while embracing their individuality.
Our 0800 RNZCGP (0800 769 247) Crisis Line referral service is a confidential line to us here at the College. If you are feeling stressed, not coping or wanting to discuss a medico-legal issue, we can confidentially refer you to the appropriate support and service.
We can put you in touch with a colleague in your faculty (or outside of your faculty if you wish). Contact the College on +64 4 496 5999 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
Self Care for General Practitioners
Information and review activities based on a model for self-care (out of print - currently being updated).