Our College is supporting the national Fight Fatigue campaign to help raise awareness of fatigue amongst NHS healthcare staff. The campaign, run in partnership with the Association of Anaesthetists, the Royal College of Anaesthetists (RCoA) and the Faculty of Intensive Care Medicine (FICM) aims to tackle the negative effects of shift working and fatigue on the NHS workforce.
The campaign was launched last year in response to the tragic death of a trainee anaesthetist who died whilst driving home tired after a night shift. In addition, a national survey of over 2,000 anaesthetic trainees published in the scientific journal Anaesthesia found:
- Nearly three quarters of respondents reported fatigue had a negative effect on their physical health or psychological wellbeing
- 84% had felt too tired to drive home safely after a night shift
- Less than a third had access to a suitable rest facility
- 57% had experienced an accident or near miss when driving home after a night shift
Speaking about the campaign, Professor Jackie Taylor, President of the Royal College of Physicians and Surgeons of Glasgow said: “I urge every health professional to be self-aware, to be kind to yourself, to care for yourself and be concerned for the wellbeing of your colleagues. That’s why we support the #FightFatigue campaign, to ensure that we are playing our part in standing up for our profession by addressing problem of excessive fatigue.”
Association of Anaesthetists President and Consultant Anaesthetist at Aberdeen Royal Infirmary, Dr Kathleen Ferguson, said: “I’m delighted that the Royal College of Physicians and Surgeons of Glasgow is officially supporting our Fight Fatigue campaign and we look forward to working with them to help raise awareness of the issues related to fatigue.
“We want to change attitudes across the NHS to ensure everyone understands the risks of fatigue and how to mitigate against them. We hope that by taking responsibility collectively for making changes to working practice, we can improve working conditions for all staff which will in turn benefit patient care.
“As momentum for our campaign grows, we now have increasing support from organisations representing a wide range of specialties across the NHS. We also have support from MPs across the political spectrum at Westminster and the devolved bodies. We urge all our colleagues in the NHS to back our campaign and ensure everyone understands the risks of fatigue and how to mitigate them.”