Letter to the Editor
Sue Dunlevy seems not to understand depression at all in her piece Health care takes a tough toll on stressed doctors T/B 08.10.13. Ms Dunlevy begins her piece with ‘Don’t expect any sympathy from your doctor, because they are likely to be burnt out, boozing too much and as depressed as their patients.’ Patients who are depressed do not seek sympathy from their doctor’s they seek empathy (perhaps Ms Dunlevy does not understand the difference) and strategy and medication to control their illness.
Having had chronic major depression for many years I can understand why the doctors are depressed due to overload of workload, long hours with the expectation to perform at high levels constantly, it is the same insane recipe that all other members of the Australian community face so why would it not deliver the same result in doctor’s as it has in the rest of society?
Instead of Beyond Blue chairman Jeff Kennett mouthing platitudes like this should be a wakeup call to medico’s he should be suggesting ways in which the workload could be eased on Australian workers. I have seen reports that 25% of all Australians will experience what I call ‘the veil of gloom’ at some time in their lives and for some of us the veil is a permanent fixture.
Surely the time is right for the new Australian Health Minister to launch an inquiry into why this is the case and how we as a nation may go about tackling the problem as the cost to GDP must be horrific, not to mention the lost lives in the process.
13 Laura Court
North Queensland 4818
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