Stamp out bullying on World Mental Health Day

Posted on Tuesday, October 10th 2017

The Board of the Australasian Society of Aesthetic Plastic Surgeons commits to stamp out bullying on World Mental Health Day

On World Mental Health Day, 10 October, and in response to Kate Aubusson’s piece in the Sydney Morning Herald on Monday, Australasian Society of Aesthetic Plastic Surgeons (ASAPS) President, Dr Mark Magnusson urges all Specialist Plastic Surgeons to complete the Operating with Respect CPD module on bullying, a mandatory requirement by the Royal Australian College of Surgeons (RACS).

Data released by RACS shows on average 72 per cent of Fellows have completed their training across all of the specialities.  For Fellows of Plastic Surgery the completion rate was 70 per cent.

As Specialist Plastic Surgeons and on behalf of the ASAPS Board, we certainly support the RACS initiative and would expect all of our members to complete the module.  It’s important that we support and strive to maintain the highest standards of ethical practice in all its forms including interpersonal skills.

According to RACS, bullying is a real problem for surgeons, like it is in the rest of the health sector.  With almost half of us having seen it or felt its effects.  The dire consequences can be the toll it takes on the individual on the receiving end, and the potential to compromise patient safety.

To date, RACS had received 126 complaint inquiries.  About 70 per cent were related to unacceptable behaviour, mostly bullying, however only 25 per cent of inquiries became formal complaints.

So what do you need to do?

To help build a culture of respect in surgery you can:

  • Complete Operating with Respect online module. This is mandatory for Fellows, SET Trainees and IMGs. Do it now online. CPD 2017 requirement.
  • Do the Foundation Skills for Surgical Educators (FSSE) course. It is mandatory if you teach or train SET trainees or supervise IMGs.
  • Do the one-day Operating with Respect Face to Face course which launched in April 2017. Mandatory for SET Surgical Supervisors, IMG Clinical Assessors and Training Board/Education Committee Representatives.

The deadline for completing the mandatory 45-minute online course is 31 December.

Now is the time to build respect and improve patient safety in surgery and deal with discrimination, bullying and sexual harassment.

Visit the RACS website to find out more.

What’s involved in my surgery?

Take a closer look at procedures