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Your role

  • Provide support
  • Meet with doctor
  • Assess readiness to return to work
  • Facilitate period of supervision

The processes of planning an absence from work and a return to work should be driven by the doctor in order to optimise their action plan for a safe transition back into clinical practice.

In order to effectively support doctors who are returning to work, it is important to be supportive and understanding and to tailor the reintroduction process to each doctor's individual needs. Consideration should be given to the returning doctor's learning style to enable them to regain skills and knowledge and to ensure they are supported to provide safe patient care. 

If a doctor has been away for work-related sickness or burnout, special attention should be paid to the contributing factors which led to the period of absence. This will involve an Occupational Health assessment to identify any working adjustments that may be required to minimise potential triggers such as on-call or night-time duties.