Skip to main content
×
×
Home

Meaningful patient engagement

  • Clare Gerada (a1)
Summary

Holding a medical degree does not magically protect the individual from ever becoming unwell or needing medical help. However, for various reasons, most of which relate to personal, professional and institutional stigma, doctors are often denied the care they so readily provide to their own patients. The author has been running a ‘sick doctor’ service for 10 years and this article describes, from the practitioner-patient perspective, the barriers to care and what can be done to improve doctors' access to services.

LEARNING OBJECTIVES

  • Appreciate the external and internal risk factors for mental illness in doctors
  • Understand why doctors do not attend for care when mentally unwell
  • Acknowledge how mentally ill doctors are exposed to stigma and how this can be overcome

DECLARATION OF INTEREST

C.G. is a partner of the Hurley Group who won the contract for PHP in 2008 and is employed by and leads the NHS Practitioner Health Programme.

Copyright
Corresponding author
Correspondence Clare Gerada, Practitioner Health Service, Hobart House, St George Wharf, Wandsworth Road, London SW8 2JB, UK. E-mail: clare.gerada@nhs.net
References
Hide All
Adshead, G, Gerada, C, Black, M (2010) Disruptive and Distressed Doctors: Relevance of Personality Disorder. Annual Conference of European Association for Physician Health, Barcelona 2010. EAPH.
Anonymous (2012) Medicine and mental illness: how can the obstacles sick doctors face be overcome? Psychiatrist, 36: 104–7.
Ballatt, J, Campling, P (2011) Intelligent Kindness: Reforming the Culture of Healthcare. RCPsych.
Brooks, SK, Gerada, C, Chalder, T (2011) Review of literature on the mental health of doctors: are specialist services needed? Journal of Mental Health, 20: 146–56.
Brooks, SK, Gerada, C, Chalder, T (2013) Doctors and dentists with mental ill health and addictions: outcomes of treatment from the Practitioner Health Programme. Journal of Mental Health, 22: 237–45.
Brooks, SK, Gerada, C, Chalder, T (2017) The specific needs of doctors with mental health problems: qualitative analysis of doctor-patients’ experiences with the Practitioner Health Programme. Journal of Mental Health, 26: 161–6.
Dinos, S, Stevens, S, Serfaty, M, et al. (2004) Stigma: the feelings and experiences of 46 people with mental illness. Qualitative study. British Journal of Psychiatry, 184: 176–81.
Gabbard, GO (1985) The role of compulsiveness in the normal physician. JAMA, 254: 2926–9.
General Medical Council (2013) Good Medical Practice. GMC.
Gerada, C (2016) Healing doctors through groups: creating time to reflect together. British Journal of General Practice, 66: e7768.
Henderson, M, Brooks, SK, del Busso, L, et al. (2012) Shame! Self-stigmatisation as an obstacle to sick doctors returning to work: a qualitative study. BMJ Open, 2: e001776.
Hinshaw, SP, Stier, A (2008) Stigma as related to mental disorders. Annual Review of Clinical Psychology, 4: 367–93.
Klitzman, R (2008) When Doctors Become Patients. Oxford University Press.
Lelliott, P, Tulloch, S, Boardman, J, et al. (2008) Mental Health and Work. Commissioned by the Cross Government Health Work and Well-Being Programme. Royal College of Psychiatrists.
Main, T (1975) Some psychodynamics of large groups. In The Large Group: Dynamics and Therapy (ed Kreeger, L): 5786. Routledge.
Menzies-Lyth, I (1959) The functions of social systems as a defence against anxiety: a report on a study of the nursing service of a general hospital. Human Relations, 13: 95121.
North East London Strategic Health Authority (2003) Report of an Independent Inquiry into the Care and Treatment of Daksha Emson and her Daughter Freya. NELSHA.
Parsons, T (1951) Illness and the role of the physician: a sociological perspective. American Journal of Orthopsychiatry, 21: 452–60.
Parveen, N (2016) GP found dead after being suspended over bipolar disorder blog. The Guardian, 26 August.
Tomlinson, J (2014) Lessons from “the other side”: teaching and learning from doctors’ illness narratives. BMJ Careers, 2 June.
Wessely, A, Gerada, C (2013) When doctors need treatment: an anthropological approach to why doctors make bad patients. BMJ Careers, 12 November.
Wrate, R (1999) Increase in staff numbers may reduce doctors’ ‘presenteeism’. BMJ, 319: 1502.
Recommend this journal

Email your librarian or administrator to recommend adding this journal to your organisation's collection.

BJPsych Advances
  • ISSN: 2056-4678
  • EISSN: 2056-4686
  • URL: /core/journals/bjpsych-advances
Please enter your name
Please enter a valid email address
Who would you like to send this to? *
×

Metrics

Full text views

Total number of HTML views: 12
Total number of PDF views: 43 *
Loading metrics...

Abstract views

Total abstract views: 197 *
Loading metrics...

* Views captured on Cambridge Core between 6th June 2018 - 17th August 2018. This data will be updated every 24 hours.

Meaningful patient engagement

  • Clare Gerada (a1)
Submit a response

eLetters

No eLetters have been published for this article.

×

Reply to: Submit a response


Your details


Conflicting interests

Do you have any conflicting interests? *