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One of the motions submitted to this year's SAS Conference claims that morale among healthcare workers is currently at an all time low - and with this in mind, it is disingenuous to recommend a career in UK medicine at this time. Do you agree with this?
What evidence is there that morale is low?
I'm not sure that we ever did 'recommend' a career in medicine: it is something that you just wanted to do, you don't want ever to do anything else, and school leavers strive to get the grades they need for medical school because they just wnat to be doctors. I doubt if they want to do it because they want to be rich/famous/work 9 to 5; I hope they still want to do it for reason of doing something interesting, challenging, and useful to fellow human beings. So, althought we may be grumpy about overworking, pension changes, management interference and so on, I still think that being a doctor is one of the most satisfying professions there is. If a young person asked my advice, I'd say, if you want to do it, go ahead, but for the right reasons.So: it's a no to this motion, sorry!
The point of this motion is to get some debate going around this subject to try to highlight the absolute need to encourage the right school leavers into medicine. Morale is low, just look and listen, and when doctors wouldn't encourage their own kids to do medicine because of the general trend in working conditions, lack of progression , pay, pensions etc etc why would we encourage others to do so.
I have proposed this motion to try to highlight the NEED for employers to realise that job satisfaction and work life balance are so important to recruit and retain doctors in the long term. Why is it that the peak age for female GPs to leave general practice is 35 and the average age is 42. Doesn't support the prospect in GP land for anyone wanting a life outside their job.
I ask you to Support the motion to let the powers that be know there is a problem, then we can help them to sort it out so that we ARE able to encourage the next generations to follow a career in medicine.