Registrar safety and wellbeing

Should you find yourself in need of pastoral advice there are several people within your support team that can help. Your Medical Educator (ME) and Registrar Liaison Officer (RLO) can be contacted if the need arises, they are all listed on your GPRime profile. Your supervisor within your GP practice can also be of help to you. If you are a rural trainee and you find yourself in need of pastoral care during your rural placement, your Rural Support Officer (RSO) is also available to support you and your family.

We will make every effort to be alert to difficulties you may be having and encourage you to be alert to those cues within yourself and your peers. We strive as an organisation to assist in destigmatising mental health issues. If your psychological health is at risk, contact and attend your own GP, and believe that we at GP Synergy will listen and support and do all we can to ensure you regain your health and wellbeing to continue your progress to general practice fellowship.

There are counselling sessions available to registrars through GP Synergy and your college – either through the RACGP GP Support Program or the ACRRM Employee Assistance Program. More information on these services can be found under ‘Wellbeing resources’ on GPRime. Having your own GP is important to optimise your own health. DRS4DRS promotes the health and wellbeing of doctors across Australia and has online resources, referral services and can assist in finding a GP.

Please familiarise yourself with the Wellbeing and Support page on the GP Synergy website as there is a lot of helpful information. It provides guidance on mental health, burnout, self-care, practical support and more.

Wellbeing advice is also available through General Practice Registrars Australia (GPRA). GPRA is an independent organisation protecting the rights of GP trainees and membership is free.

Your peers are valuable as they are often going through the same experiences and challenges. Our GP educational workshops are a great place to meet other registrars, gain friendships and find a registrar study group!  GP Synergy also offers a GP Synergy Mentorship program which matches GPT1/PRR1 registrars with GPT3+/PRR3+ registrars to provide peer support and ease the transition from hospital into general practice.

You are encouraged to actively look out for warning signs of fatigue and burnout in yourself and your peers. Signs of burnout include exhaustion, desensitisation, lack of meaning, preoccupation with work and making mistakes.

If you are travelling large distances, at night or on rural roads, it is your responsibility to be safe while driving. Psychomotor and other functions including cognitive impairment, reduced motor control and micro sleeps have all been shown to increase among fatigued doctors with implications for road safety.

You are strongly encouraged to consider safety and avoid driving when feeling fatigued.

Tips for preventing and managing fatigue (simple but they work!):

  • a good sleep environment and avoiding devices/technology prior to bedtime
  • exercise regularly
  • a healthy diet and limit alcohol
  • whilst at work take regular breaks and drink plenty of fluids.

What do you do when things are not going to plan?

Things may not always go as planned during your training.

Factors can affect your training including personal, social, health, financial, cultural, work and training related factors. It is always helpful to talk to someone and seek advice in such situations. Depending on what the issue is, people who can help you include your supervisor, medical educator, rural support officer, registrar liaison officer or a colleague.

Useful resources