Support for your wellbeing
Connect with your peers
Your peers can be a valuable source of support during your training because they will be going through similar experiences and challenges. Out-of-practice workshops are a great place to meet other registrars, develop friendships and find a registrar study group. Having a support network is an important part of your self care.
The GP Support Program
The RACGP is committed to fostering a culture of self care amongst GPs. The GP Support Program is a free service available to all RACGP members.
You can access professional advice to help cope with personal and work-related issues that can impact on your wellbeing, workplace morale, performance and safety, and psychological health. For more information, refer to the GP Support Program.
General Practice Registrars Australia
General Practice Registrars Australia (GPRA) also offers wellbeing advice. GPRA is an independent organisation protecting the rights of general practice trainees; membership is free. More information about support available can be found on the GPRA website.
Indigenous General Practice Registrars Network
Indigenous General Practice Registrars Network (IGPRN) is an advocacy network for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander GPs in training that provides professional, educational, cultural and exam preparation support that is led by peers. Each year, in addition to offering online learning and networking opportunities, IGPRN runs two national workshops and all Indigenous GPs in training are invited to attend. Indigenous GP Fellows are engaged to provide support, education and mentorship. IGPRN members support each other by sharing their experiences and knowledge. The support of Indigenous peers during general practice training makes a significant and positive impact on the whole training experience.
For more information and to become a member, visit the IGPRN website.
Australian Indigenous Doctors Association
The Australian Indigenous Doctors Association (AIDA) offers networking and professional development opportunities. It also provides mentoring which allows members to support and guide each other academically and culturally through their medical studies and careers as Indigenous medical doctors. For more information and to become a member, visit the AIDA website.
Having your own GP is important to optimise your own health. DRS4DRS is an independent program providing confidential support and resources to doctors and medical students across Australia, including helping you find your own GP.
The DRS4DRS website provides coordinated access to mental health and wellbeing resources, training on becoming a doctor for doctors, community news and navigation to state and territory helplines and referral services. Confidential phone advice is available 24 hours a day for any doctor or medical student in Australia. More information about support available can be found on the DRS4DRS website.
CRANAplus Bush Support Services
CRANAplus Bush Support Services provides a free and confidential telephone counselling service for rural and remote health practitioners and is available 24 hours a day, seven days a week. The service is staffed by psychologists, including two Aboriginal psychologists. CRANAplus membership is not required to access the service. More information about support available can be found on the CRANAplus website or phone 1800 805 391.
You can find other self-care resources, including support services, on the RACGP GP wellbeing webpage.
What can you do when things are not going to plan?
During your training, things may not always go as planned. Your training may be affected by work or training-related factors, as well as personal, social, health, financial or cultural factors.
When you have a problem, it can be very helpful to talk to someone and get some advice. Depending on the issue, you might like to talk with someone in your program team, the registrar liaison officer or a trusted colleague.
If your training site manager or supervisor is concerned about your wellbeing or performance, they may communicate that to your program team.
Issues in the workplace
The RACGP expects all registrars, medical educators, supervisors and training site staff to behave in a professional manner and to treat each other with dignity and respect. Unfortunately, there may still be occasions where bullying or harassment occurs while undertaking training activities. You may also feel unsupported by your supervisor either personally or educationally.
You should be able to report any of these issues to others in the workplace without fear of retribution or fear it may negatively affect your training and career. If you feel comfortable to do so, you should raise the issue with the person you believe to be responsible. This can quickly and informally resolve the issue. If you feel uncomfortable doing so or the issue remains unresolved, you should report any occurrence as per your training site policies and procedures as soon as possible.
If the matter is not resolved through your training site, or you feel unable to report it to them, you can raise the issue with your supervisor, medical educator (ME), training coordinator or registrar liaison officer, depending on who you feel comfortable speaking to about the issue. They will help guide you through the next best steps, which may include submitting a formal complaint.
If a report is made to the RACGP of bullying, harassment or other issues in the workplace, it will be taken seriously and acted on promptly. Confidentiality will be maintained, and support will be offered to all parties. A fair and unbiased investigation will be conducted, and the process and outcomes will be communicated to all involved promptly.
Refer to Dispute of a decision or Complaints for more information.