Background Stress and burnout are significant problems among doctors, as well as higher rates of mental health problems. Estimates in the UK are limited, due to few studies. Mindfulness based stress reduction programs are recommended to treat mood disorders/anxiety, Mindfulness programs comprise professional development curriculum in many US medical schools and some non-UK hospitals. These have been shown to reduce levels of burnout and improve general wellbeing scores. We have adapted current programs UK paediatric doctors. We have set up and evaluated a short mindfulness based sessions for UK doctors which fulfils an unmet need for doctors, which has received positive feedback.
Aims to report the introduction and evaluation of mindfulness course in junior doctors,
Methods The intervention two 2.5 hour mindfulness teaching, with email support between sessions. The General Health Questionnaire 12 was alongside general feedback.
Results Six participants recruited (n=3 paediatric department, n=2/171 local junior doctors, n=1/240 regional paediatric doctors). There was no difference in the GHQ12 over the course (16.3, SD 5.5. VS 13.6 SD 5.78, p=0.43). All participants enjoyed the course, felt this was useful and thought it should be widely implemented for junior doctors. 5/6 junior doctors believed in universal implementation, and 1/6 for those who request it/have additional needs.
Conclusion There remains significant stigma/resistance as evidenced by the poor response rate of less than 1%. In the current climate of NHS reforms, there has been a CQUIN (March 2016) to highlight the importance of staff wellbeing, which is additional funding available to support staff. Further studies in this area are needed to further evaluate the effectiveness of similar interventions, and their impact on rates of stress, burnout and staff general well-being.
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