Scotland Clinical Lead for Practitioner Wellbeing

RCGP Scotland is seeking to recruit into this new role to progress our work around GP wellbeing.

For a multitude of reasons, it is a challenging time to be a GP. Rising workloads, rising public demand and expectations, caring for an aging population with more complex health and social care needs, fragmentation of community-based teams, dysfunctional primarysecondary interfaces, worsening health inequalities, cuts to funding and a diminishing GP workforce are but a few of the reasons why many GPs report feeling stressed or burned out. A recent survey revealed that almost half of our GP workforce report feeling so stressed that they cannot cope at least once a month.1

High levels of stress in our GP workforce are concerning for many reasons. It impacts on our ability to tolerate uncertainty, to manage risk, to make decisions. It impacts on patient experience and on patient safety. It damages relationships in teams. Ultimately, it can result in GPs leaving the profession.

Much of the stress experienced by GPs is generated by the sheer intensity of the workload, but a significant proportion is also generated by the “emotional labour” of the jobs that GPs do. Often GPs are the first point of contact for patients and their families at times of distress and at least a third of GP consultations are recognised as having a mental health component within them. Without a forum for processing, sharing and understanding some of the difficult emotions and frustrations that can arise within these types of consultation, the effects can be more damaging on the individual GP. It can be far more challenging to retain compassionate practice when the system within which GPs are working is itself compassion-draining.

RCGP Scotland, through this role, aims to better understand the reasons for poor practitioner wellbeing and based on this information, to develop appropriate resources, both internally and in collaboration with key stakeholders, to offer support to GPs. They will also represent RCGP in the various external meetings where it is considered that GP wellbeing is a priority area to consider.

Key Tasks

These could include:

  1. Provide clinical input to the evaluation and write-up of the recent RCGP workload and wellbeing survey of members and consider next steps
  2. Undertake a scoping exercise of existing wellbeing resources available to Scottish GPs
  3. Using the findings from the survey and scoping of available resources, make recommendations to plug the gap and, where appropriate, develop appropriate resources/services
  4. Represent RCGP Scotland at internal meetings (e.g. RCGP UK Wellbeing Group, relevant programme Boards, etc.) and key external meetings (e.g. GMC Scottish Advisory Group on Wellbeing)
  5. Consider the transferability of resources developed elsewhere in the UK (e.g.Practitioner Health Programme)
  6. Feed into the work of the RCGP Scotland Executive Team in their respective areas
  7. Undertake media work in relation to the issue of practitioner wellbeing

Essential Attributes

  • Member or Fellow of RCGP in good standing
  • Significant experience in General Practice
  • Understanding of the current developments in wellbeing in Scotland
  • Data gathering, report writing and data analysis
  • Excellent networking, relationship building and influencing skills
  • Excellent communication and presentation skills
  • Background knowledge of current health and social care structure in Scotland.

Desirable Attributes

  • Previous experience working with Local Health Boards or Scottish Government in an
    advisory role.

Time Commitment

  • Two sessions per week (46 weeks per annum). Performance reviews will be conducted annually with the Chair of RCGP Scottish Council.

Reporting

The role will report to the Chair of RCGP Scottish Council, and they will work closely with the RCGP Scotland Executive Officers (EOs), particularly the EO for Membership and for Professional Development, where there is likely to be considerable overlap.

Location

Administrative support for the role will be provided by the Projects and Initiatives Team, based in the RCGP Scotland offices at 25 Queen Street, Edinburgh. The post holder may be required to travel to other areas in Scotland. Additional contact will be required via email.

Remuneration

RCGP sessional rate – £222 per session for 2018/19.

Travel and subsistence expenses are available in accordance with the RCGP Travel, Subsistence and Expenses Policy and payable on receipt of an RCGP Scotland claim form which must be submitted monthly.

Duration

The initial duration of the post will be until the end of March 2019, with the potential for the role to be extended further, subject to funding availability.

If you would like to apply for this post, please send a CV and covering letter explaining your suitability for the role to helen.mccabe@rcgp.org.uk

RCGP Evaluation of GP Forward View: ComRes interviewed 208 Scottish GPs online and by telephone between 3 August and 17 September 2017. Data were not weighted. ComRes is a member of the British Polling Council and abides by its rules.

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