Junior doctors are concerned about inappropriate behaviour, bullying, harassment, intimidation and verbal and physical assaults at Orange hospital, a new report has found.
The Australian Medical Association and the Australian Salaried Medical Officers' Federation’s 2018 Hospital Health Check, which surveyed 1351 doctors-in-training at hospitals across NSW, was answered by 20 doctors in Orange and three in Bathurst.
The report found 34 per cent of junior doctors at Orange and Bathurst hospitals said they were afraid to report complaints of “inappropriate workplace behaviours” for fear of the consequences.
It also found 30 per cent had felt unsafe due to verbal or physical threats or intimidation from patients or staff.
And it found 17 per cent had experienced bullying, discrimination or harassment from other staff while 34 per cent had witnessed it happening to another staff member.
It can make life pretty hard.Dr Tessa Kennedy, AMA
The survey gave the Orange and Bathurst hospitals an overall B grade while Dubbo Base Hospital received the same mark.
That is an improvement for Orange and Dubbo who were given a C grade in the survey last year while Bathurst was not included.
Orange and Bathurst hospitals scored their best ratings for morale and work culture with doctors ranking it an average 75.36 out of 100.
The doctors rated the education and training opportunities at 62.79, their well being at 61.29, access to leave at 60.14, while overtime and rostering was least at 56.22.
The survey found that 82 per cent of doctors were concerned about making a mistake due to fatigue from working long hours and 60 per cent said they were worried about their personal health being affected by their workload.
AMA NSW doctors-in-training committee member Dr Tessa Kennedy said Orange rated above the state average but the doctors’ concerns about bullying and fears about reporting inappropriate behaviour were the same statewide.
“It can make life pretty hard. It can remain a secret that eats away at people, it eats away at their self esteem,” she said.
Dr Kennedy said the AMA wanted hospitals to pay doctors’ unrostered overtime work and improve the processes for handling complaints, including having independent assessors.
The Orange Health Service was contacted for comment.
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