It’s been another busy quarter at RANZCOG, and the College has some key pieces of work that I am excited to share with you.
Operating with Respect
Building respect in the medical workplace and eliminating discrimination, bullying and sexual harassment has been a constant theme within medicine and specialist medical colleges over the last couple of years.
Led by the excellent work of the Royal Australasian College of Surgeons (RACS), the aim has been to identify and remove bad behaviour in order to improve patient safety and work environments.
To help build a culture of respect in obstetrics and gynaecology, the Operating with Respect module developed by RACS is available to all RANZCOG trainees, Fellows and specialist international medical graduates (SIMGs) via the CLIMATE eLearning website, linked to from the eLearning tab of the RANZCOG website. CPD points are available at completion of this module.
The aim of this module is to help Fellows, trainees and SIMGs improve their knowledge and understanding of unacceptable behaviours, enabling them to recognise when they occur and the adverse impact they have on individuals, team performance and patient safety.
As mentioned in the previous issue of O&G Magazine, the College also has a Respectful Workplaces workshop to support the development of respectful workplace culture across training sites.
The College’s goal is to make hospitals and other environments that our members work in safe and positive. Instituting and supporting healthy workplace cultures, leadership and professionalism in obstetrics and gynaecology is a key part of this.
We all need someone to talk to confidentially sometimes and Converge International is now available to Fellows, trainees and SIMGs. RANZCOG has partnered with Converge International as a confidential support service that is available any time. This service can be used for any personal or work-related matter and is also available to family members seeking support.
Converge International employs more than 1600 qualified specialists trained in counselling, social work and psychology. I encourage you to talk about this useful resource with your colleagues.
Gender Equity and Diversity
The newly formed Gender Equity and Diversity Working Group (GEDWG), reporting to the RANZCOG Board, is separately undertaking important work to identify and address existing gaps in College policy and processes that hinder equitable, inclusive and diverse ways of engaging with, being a part of, and contributing to, the College.
This work will result in a Gender Equity and Diversity Policy, to be released later this year, and the group looks forward to continuing to improve gender equity and diversity for all RANZCOG members.
Like all members of RANZCOG, College staff are involved and invested in the outcomes and work of the College every day. The work that staff are committed to reflects our current staff values:
- Member Services
In 2019, we hope to work together with members to develop values that can be shared between RANZCOG members and staff, with a common vision and outlook for the future. These core values will also communicate who we are as a College, strengthen our identity and solidify our way of working together.
Annual Scientific Meeting
In October, the RANZCOG 2019 Annual Scientific Meeting (ASM) will be held in Melbourne, and we are expecting more than 1000 specialists, sub-specialists, trainees, medical practitioners and SIMGs, and other healthcare professionals to attend.
Keynote speakers Prof Basky Thilaganathan, Dr Ranee Thakar, A/Prof Sawsan (Suzie) As-Sanie and Prof William Grobman, each bring a vast amount of knowledge and expertise that no doubt will be warmly received by attendees. The theme for this year’s meeting – Stop. Start. Continue – suggests an opportunity to pause and reflect on practices that all members and trainees should consider abandoning, based on evidence that suggests they are either ineffective or not cost effective. The meeting will explore the evidence to consider starting new therapies and provide important updates on the ways in which the speciality of obstetrics and gynaecology should continue to evolve.
This year’s theme also relates to the theme in the beginning of this article; the need for all of us – Fellows, trainees and College staff – to take time out to reflect on our own behaviours in the workplace and how we can be part of positive cultural change.
I am pleased to announce that the ASM will once again have a crèche to accommodate families, providing everyone the opportunity to attend this networking and professional development event.
From the highly anticipated keynote speakers within the scientific program, to the array of workshops for all interests and an engaging social program on offer, in the vibrant city of Melbourne, it will be an event not to be missed.
I look forward to seeing you there.