Surgeons sign pledge board against workplace harassment

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26 September 2016

Surgeons at Logan Hospital will sign a pledge board committing to stamp out bullying, discrimination and sexual harassment as part of a new effort by Metro South Health and the Royal Australasian College of Surgeons to enhance the surgical workplace and improve patient safety.

RACS Vice President Professor Spencer Beasley said hospital wards, operating theatres and outpatients were areas where surgical education and health service employment overlapped.

He said it made sense for employers and educators to look for new ways to improve the experience of surgical trainees, make hospitals a better and safer place to work and improve patient safety.

"Research shows that bad behaviour has a negative impact on the whole team and not just the people at which it's directed.

"This partnership is about ensuring improvements in patient safety by improving work environments," Prof Beasley said.
Logan Hospital Director of Surgery Dr Brian McGowan welcomed the initiative and said Logan Hospital was proud to roll out the College 'Action Plan on Building Respect and Improving Patient Safety' (BRIPS).

"This signature board is a visible and tangible commitment of the surgeons of Logan Hospital to the goals of the College and Queensland Health in this endeavour," Dr McGowan said.

Metro South Health Executive Director Medical Services Dr Susan O'Dwyer said Metro South Health strongly believed every employee had the right to work in an environment free from any form of bullying, sexual harassment and discrimination.

She said as an organisation, Metro South Health had taken a leadership role to ensure the principles that promoted a workplace free from harassment were integrated into everyday practice.

"We believe that a safe and supportive work environment not only benefits our staff, but also delivers better outcomes for our patients."

"Our partnership with RACS will strengthen the existing supportive culture within our surgical teams and provide a solid framework to promptly address any issues if they occur," Dr O'Dwyer said.

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