Stressed doctors thrown an MPS lifeline

Chris Bateman


A little-known free counselling service used by stressed local doctors last year has been introduced in South Africa for members of the Medical Protection Society (MPS) following telling research in New Zealand and locally.
The service is highly confidential and not even MPS is aware of who is reporting a particular problem. Despite only 19 doctors using the service to date, many more have been referred by MPS but have yet to take up the offer.
Dr Tim Hegan, International Operations Director for MPS, told 600 doctors attending an ethics evening in Cape Town on 12 November that thoughts of suicide and quitting medicine had been discussed by some users of the service.
Referrals for psychiatric treatment and long-term counselling were also made. Others ‘declined help owing to tight time constraints and feelings of inadequacy and pride’ – an alarmingly widespread malady.

Author's affiliations

Chris Bateman, HMPG

Full Text

PDF (127KB)


Free counselling service, Medical Protection Society.

Cite this article

South African Medical Journal 2010;100(1):11-13.

Article History

Date submitted: 2009-11-26
Date published: 2010-01-13

Article Views

Abstract views: 1613
Full text views: 913

Comments on this article

*Read our policy for posting comments here