Bullying culture could deter interstate health staff

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A culture of bullying in the Territory’s infamous health system could deter interstate health staff from working in Canberra, Shadow Health Minister Vicki Dunne has warned.

Health Minister Meegan Fitzharris wants to attract more medical practitioners and allied health professionals to ease congested waiting lists, both to see specialists and for surgery.

But with the toxic culture of bullying in the health system, along with old and poorly maintained infrastructure, and, now, no prospect of the SPIRE building until at least 2025, her chances aren’t looking good.

“Interstate health staff won’t want to uproot their lives to work in Canberra if systemic bullying is part of an already dire-looking work package,” Mrs Dunne warned.

“Specialists tell me that it’s difficult to attract practitioners to Canberra because of the woes of our health system. A culture of bullying only compounds the problem.

“It’s no secret that bullying exists in our hospitals. It’s an issue that has been raised by numerous health staff, many of whom have said they were vilified when they sought help.

“Without safe and respectful pathways allowing victims to bring bullying to light, the bullying culture will only grow more toxic.

“Why would any health staffer willingly sign up for that kind of work environment?

“Minister Fitzharris needs to take decisive steps to stamp out bullying in the health system if she wants to make our hospitals attractive to more professionals.

“She should ensure there is proper support for victims and appropriate disciplinary measures for bullies,” Mrs Dunne concluded.

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