DiscoverPomegranate HealthEp101: Setting the standard for workforce wellbeing
Ep101: Setting the standard for workforce wellbeing

Ep101: Setting the standard for workforce wellbeing

Update: 2023-09-26


We’ve known for a decade that about 50 percent of doctors meet the criteria for burnout, and the figure is up to 70 percent among trainees. But organisations have been left to come up with their own solutions to this, the result being that many simply offer band aid solutions rather than systemic ones. Unforgiving work conditions pose a problem for both recruitment and retention of staff to the health workforce. The New Zealand Health Department, Te Whatu Ora, forecasts that within ten years supply of doctors, pharmacists and nurses will fall short of demand by 14 to 18 percent. In response they have establish they have established a national Health Charter that sets the workplace standards to keep staff safe and engaged.

Australia is one step behind, but in early September there was a leadership conference aimed at developing a similar wellbeing strategy nationally. It was envisaged that there would be Chief Wellness Officers at every major health service, reporting validated metrics about their workforce to a national taskforce. And as explained in the keynote presentation at the conference, at the organisational level there are different responses appropriate to the three main domains that influence staff wellbeing; these being personal resilience, professional culture and basic administrative efficiency. This podcast captures reflections from wellbeing champions at several different Australasian health jurisdictions.

Dr George Eskander
MB DCH DRANZCOG FRACGP (Executive Area Director Clinical Services; North Metropolitan Health Service & Sir Charles Gairdner Osborne Park Hospital Care Group)
Dr Bethan Richards MB FRACP MMed MSportsMed (Head of Rheumatology, Chief Medical Wellness Officer, Royal Prince Alfred Hospital; Senior Clinical Lecturer, The University of Sydney)
Dr Joanna Sinclair MB FANZCA (Senior Medical Officer Wellbeing Lead, Counties Manukau Health) Victoria Hirst (Chief of Knowledge Networks, General Manager of Health Roundtable, Beamtree)
Associate Professor Anne Powell BPharm, MBBS, FRACP (Program Director of Physician Education, Alfred Health in Melbourne; Monash University)
Professor Jennifer Martin MBChB MA FRACP PhD GAICD (Chair of Clinical Pharmacology, University of Newcastle; John Hunter Hospital)

Produced by Mic Cavazzini DPhil. Music licenced from Epidemic Sound includes ‘Kryptonite’ by Blue Steel and ‘Thyone’ by Ben Elson. Music courtesy of Free Music Archive includes ‘A Path Unwinding’ and ‘The Zepplin’ by Blue Dot Sessions and ‘Summer Days’ by Kai Engel. Image by sturti licenced from Getty Images. 

Editorial feedback kindly provided by physicians Aidan Tan and David Arroyo. Thanks also to Sarah Dalton and Fiona Fitzgerald for their coordination support.

Please visit the Pomegranate Health web page for a transcript and supporting references. Login to MyCPD to record listening and reading as a prefilled learning activity. Subscribe to new episode email alerts or search for ‘Pomegranate Health’ in 









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Ep101: Setting the standard for workforce wellbeing

Ep101: Setting the standard for workforce wellbeing

the Royal Australasian College of Physicians