Being a JMO is Hard
Working as a junior doctor can be incredibly stressful and adjusting both to the complex
hospital environment and the pressures and demands of the workforce is always
Admitting it is Hard
We Have all Been There
- It is very common to want to succeed and not entertain any thoughts of failure
- It is very common to want to put on a brave face for your colleagues and to hide
private doubts and misgivings
- It is natural to worry about whether any suggestion that you are not coping will impact
on your future employability, especially in the current hyper-competitive environment
Almost all doctors have been through your experience. The fact that almost all of you,
at some time, have worried about causing patient harm, or found the long hours
unbearable, or questioned whether medicine is the career for you, or seen the impact that
the commitment to medicine demands on your social life and personal relationships, means
that you are the first and most valuable resource in supporting your colleagues.
Your Colleagues are one of your Best Resources
Talking to each other, sharing some of your private fears and empathising, helps both you and
your colleagues. Look to your friend for help and look out in case they need help.
However, apart from talking to your friends, it’s important to know there is plenty of
other help and support available to JMOs who may be experiencing difficulties.
See below for more resources
The Doctors' Health Advisory Service
The Doctors' Health Advisory Service (NSW) aims to ensure that every doctor has ready access to health care. The service offers a telephone helpline for personal and confidential advice for practitioners and students, as well as for colleagues and family members in NSW and the ACT. Staffed by volunteer medical practitioners, it handles calls relating to stress and mental illness, drug and alcohol problems, or personal and financial difficulties.
NSW help line: +61 2 9437 6552 (24-hour service)
Click here to visit the website.
Employee Assistance Program (EAP)
Counselling for you; for work and/or non-work personal issues. The EAP is a free, work-based, early intervention service which provides appropriate, timely, professional and confidential counselling and referral services for WSLHD employees (and their immediate family) in order to assist them to identify and resolve professional, personal or work-related issues.
1800 818728 or www.accesseap.com.au
JMO Support Line 1300 JMO 321
The Support Line is part of the NSW Health Respectful Culture in Medicine Initiative. It has been developed to provide a specialised, free and confidential support service to all junior medical staff in NSW Health.
- The Support Line has been established for JMOs in response to evidence of junior medical staff experiencing difficult and unacceptable behaviours, and in some instances, bullying and harassment, during training.
- Support on the Line is provided by Senior Medical Officers working in hospitals around NSW who understand your situation. There are measures in place to ensure that all support remains confidential and the Support Officers will be located in a different District or Network to you and be from a different specialty to ensure your anonymity.
Call 1300 JMO 321 or 1300 566 321 to make an confidential appointment or visit the website
PUP is a positive psychology coaching program that has been designed to support JMOs to thrive. Positive psychology focuses on wellbeing and the creation of a satisfying life filled with meaning, pleasure, engagement and
It is not about putting on a happy face, sometimes life can be stressful, and challenges are inevitable. However, there are evidence-based strategies that enable people to navigate these challenges more effectively and enable them to enjoy life, despite the stress and challenges. Types of situations PUP can support JMOs with are:
- Managing stress
- Managing workload
- Learning to care without it becoming emotionally exhausted
- Enhancing all aspects of health and wellbeing
To access this free service just talk to your DPET
For further information click here
"Beyond Blue provides information and support to help everyone in Australia achieve their best possible mental health, whatever their age and wherever they live":
Beyond blue also partners with employees, including the health sector, to develop strategies for improved mental health in the workplace. For more details see theBeyond Blue Health Services Program.
Click here to download the Beyond Blue National Mental Health Survey of Doctors and Medical Students Executive summary.
Contact 1300 22 4636 www.beyondblue.org.au Email
- Provides a number of resources to address issues associated with depression, anxiety and related mental health disorders
- Provides online support and 24 hour telephone support including suicide and crisis support
- Helps to find a GP who specialises in psychological medicine
A website run by and for junior doctors to promote health and wellbeing:
- Self-assessment tools to identify stress
- Resources on avoiding, reducing and managing stress
- Links to help if things are not going well
24 hours crisis support and suicide prevention services Contact Suicide Callback Service
1300 659 467 www.lifeline.org.au Crisis support chat
7:00pm – 4am
(AEST) 7 days.
Committing to regular exercise is an important element of maintaining well being, and JMO rosters don't always help. WSLHD offers its employees a fitness passport which, for a price that is usually lower than average gym membership, allows you unlimited access to multiple facilities accross Sydney This means you can take advantage of the gyms close to work when you are rostered on, and those close to home when you are rostered off. Further details can be found on line at https://www.fitnesspassport.com.au/WSS