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Wellbeing of obstetricians - questionnaire
Wellbeing of obstetricians - questionnaire

Wellbeing of obstetricians - questionnaire

30 May 2023 (Last updated: 8 Jun 2023 09:21)

Maternity is arguably one of the most rewarding areas of medicine, where staff are involved in the arrival of new life.  But births do not always go to plan, despite the best intentions, plans and interventions. Working in obstetrics for any length of time, we are likely to be involved in some way in at least one bad outcome.

Poor obstetric outcome is usually unexpected and attracts regulatory scrutiny and negative media interest, as many recent reports have demonstrated; but the impact of the bad outcome and the subsequent regulatory and media interest on the carer (midwife or obstetrician) has received less attention. In 2000 the term “second victim” was introduced to described doctors involved in poor medical outcomes . In 2019, pioneering work examined the experience of psychiatrists who cared for patients who committed suicide. This led to a paradigm shift in the way the RCPsych manages this issue and supports its members. The RCOG has acknowledged the issue of burn out in its reports, but we believe the issue needs further exploration.

A team of obstetricians at the South Tees Hospital NHS Trust who are acutely aware of the impact of such outcomes on themselves and those around them, and wanted to explore whether this was felt more broadly across the specialty, and what current strategies work best (or less well) to support those involved.

By completing the attached anonymous survey (approximately 10 minutes), you will be helping them to better understand the effect of bad birth outcomes on obstetricians, including the effect of the subsequent investigations, and to map and plan the best support that could be offered to reduce burnout and other unhelpful negative responses.

Please see the survey here