The Mental Health of Doctors

The mental and physical health of medical students and doctors in Australia is an ongoing concern within the medical profession and community. Recent research and media reports have highlighted the high rates of suicide, depression, anxiety disorders, substance use and self-medication throughout the profession.

To address these issues, beyondblue has developed a national Doctors' Mental Health Program, in consultation with key stakeholders from the mental health and medical sectors.

The Advisory Committee's first activity was to oversee "The Mental Health of Doctors - A systematic literature review:" (Download from bottom of page) which investigated issues associated with the mental health of medical students and doctors. The review investigated the following 10 topic areas:

1) prevalence of anxiety and depression

2) prevalence of substance misuse and self-medication

3) suicide rates

4) risk factors for anxiety and depression

5) help-seeking rates for anxiety and depression

6) barriers to help-seeking for mental health care

7) interventions for anxiety and depression

8) attitudes of medical colleagues

9) impact on patient care

10) impact on work and family life.

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