Background Doctor’s health and wellbeing are critical to the quality of care they provide, both to their patients and to themselves.1 Thirty percent of doctors in the UK are not satisfied with their day to day work and in 2019 eighteen percent of doctors in training reported having to take time off work due to stress.2 It is also acknowledged that doctors in training are more positive about their experiences when working in a supportive workplace.2
GMC National Training Survey results for the last three years show that there has been a fall in trainee satisfaction with feedback received in the Paediatric Department at Hull University Teaching Hospitals.3
Objectives The Positive Thinking Project aimed to improve trainee feedback from Consultants, through a weekly positive feedback statement and a point for development.
Secondary objective was to demonstrate the role of trainee feedback in improving trainee morale within a paediatric department.
Methods A proforma with name, grade and photograph of all trainee doctors and advanced nurse practitioners was circulated to the Consultant of the Week (COW) every week. The COW was asked to provide a positive feedback statement and point for development for each trainee who had been at work in the department during their COW week. The completed proformas were collated confidentially, and trainees received their personalised feedback via email every three months.
Trainees were then asked to give feedback on the positive thinking project, either verbally or by email. Feedback was collated over a 12 month period and anonymised. Analysis was carried out using an inductive approach and open coding.
Results Seven codes were identified, with three overriding themes. Data saturation was reached.
Conclusions Feeling valued is a cornerstone of improved morale and motivation within the NHS.4 The Positive Thinking Project aimed to focus on the provision of regular, positive feedback for trainees from Paediatric Consultants, praising what has been done well and giving an area for development. We have demonstrated that trainees feel feedback has been positive, constructive and helpful for development and that this project gave trainees feedback that they do not feel they would have otherwise received.
General Medical Council. Caring for Doctors, Caring for Patients. Published 2019.
NHS Health Education England. Junior Doctor Morale Understanding Best Practice Working Environments. Published 2017.
General Medical Council. National Training Survey. 2019, 2018, 2017.
King’s Fund. Counting the Smiles Morale and Motivation in the NHS. Published 2002.
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