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“Tomorrow’s Doctors” - health and safety in medical education. Chris Taylor Health and Safety Executive. Background: . medical staff are exposed to risks at work (violence, manual handling, stress, infections) they often manage staff exposed to the same risks
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“Tomorrow’s Doctors” - health and safety in medical education Chris TaylorHealth and Safety Executive
Background: • medical staff are exposed to risks at work (violence, manual handling, stress, infections) • they often manage staff exposed to the same risks • they generally receive no training in occupational health and safety
Background • Health Services Advisory Committee • Aim - to ensure doctors are engaged in health and safety (h&s) • HSC program on risk education • professions where safety is critical
Objectives • To persuade the General Medical Council that H&S awareness should be a part of undergraduate medical training • To produce guidance on what H&S topicsshould be included in the undergraduate medical syllabus
Strategy 1 - preparation • Find some sympathetic doctors - eg occupational health physicians and safety managers from the medical schools • Find examples of existing good practice- eg University of Wales “professional development” days
Strategy 2 - timing • The GMC was planning to revise “Tomorrow’s Doctor” in 2001 • Government Initiative on clinical risk management (patient safety) created a good opportunity • Concern among young doctors about occupational risks (eg stress, hepatitis)
Strategy 3 - tactics • Contact Heads of Medical Schools • to agree an approach • avoid concerns or hostility • Then GMC Education Committee • involving the sympathetic doctors from the medical schools
Progress 2001 • GMC agreed to add h&S objectives to tomorrow’ doctor • Joint Working Group between HSAC and the Council for Medical Schools: • drafted objectives for GMC; and • outline Guidance for Medical Schools
Progress 2002 • The latest draft of tomorrow’s doctors was produced in January 2002. • It contains the following objectives:
Tomorrow’s Doctors 2002 • ‘‘The graduate must recognise the duty to protect patients by taking action if a colleague's health, performance or conduct is putting the patient at risk’’
Tomorrow’s Doctors 2002 • Graduates must be able to take account of the principles of risk management when they practise.
Tomorrow’s Doctors 2002 • Graduates must be aware of current developments and guiding principles in the NHS, for example: • Clinical governance • The significance of health and safety • Risk assessment and management • The importance of teamworking
Tomorrow’s Doctors 2002 • Students must have opportunities to practise communicating in a variety of media ….. There should also be guidance about how to cope in difficult circumstances, for example: • Dealing with difficult and violent patients.
Tomorrow’s Doctors 2002 • “the graduate must be aware of the importance of their own health*, and its effect on his or her ability to practise as a doctor” (*and the common health risks arising from healthcare)
Tomorrow’s Doctors- next steps • Agreeing the final changes with the GMC • Developing the detailed guidance for Medical Schools • Monitoring Implementation • Looking into Post-graduate training
Tomorrow’s Doctors - Lessons • Demands on undergraduate time • Timing is critical • Profession has to be ready to accept change • It can be done!