Cover story: Stress in the spotlight

With the help of hundreds of HCSA members the association won front-page headlines on the issue of rising stress among senior hospital doctors. Now we hope to build on that research.

When we appealed for a candid response on the impact of work-related stress, HCSA members joined together tremendously to send a serious message to NHS employers, the media and the general public by relaying your experiences as dedicated front-line workers.

The headline findings related to our profession’s morale, which became front-page news in the national media because 80 per cent of you told us you had reconsidered your retirement plans because of stress.

But it doesn’t end there. The detailed responses will now also form the basis for future campaigning on behalf of both consultants and doctors in training.

Why is it that 79 per cent of our profession reported working more than contracted “always” or “often”?

Why should we be talking in such large numbers about the health and well-being impact of work-related stress, which 70 per cent of respondents said had affected them.

Clearly there is room not just for sympathy from policy-makers but more research to be able to build an accurate picture of the often overwhelming and relentless circumstances in which HCSA members work.

Our goal is to drill down into the challenges faced by members of the profession to counter the one-dimensional and clichéd view portrayed all too often in our media. This is an essential pre-requisite to winning the policy and contractual arguments of the future.

We are sure that you as professional colleagues will respond as candidly, accurately and poignantly when we seek your views on linked issues in coming months.

Read the full findings of the survey in PDF format

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