We are committed to building respect in surgery in Australia and
New Zealand, and dealing with bullying, discrimination, harassment
and sexual harassment.
Our Action Plan: Building Respect, Improving Patient
Safety outlines the work we are doing on culture and
leadership in surgery; improving surgical education and
strengthening complaints management.
Tackling discrimination and more
Being a surgeon takes more than technical excellence. How we
behave shapes our culture and profession.
We are serious about putting an end to bullying, discrimination,
harassment and sexual harassment in surgery. What we are doing is
outlined in our
Action Plan. This work is focused on three main areas: culture
and leadership, improving surgical education and strengthening
More than 20 projects are now underway, many of which will take
more than three years to deliver.
Read more about the
highlights of our achievements in 2017.
How will we Measure our Progress
We are pleased to announce that highly credentialed evaluation
professionals, Thread Consulting, have been engaged to
prepare a comprehensive evaluation framework for the Building
Respect Improving Patient Safety Initiative. The consultants,
together with a Project Reference Group, will work through a
systematic process to develop this framework, which will provide a
means of assessing the reach and impact of the Building Respect
Initiative over the medium and long term (at the 5 and 10 year
Using the project's planned outcomes as a base, key evaluation
questions and appropriate indicators and data sources will be
identified, resulting in development of a data collection plan.
This will take into account commitments already made to repeat
particular pieces of research conducted at the outset of this
initiative eg the DBSH prevalence survey, and will incorporate data
already being collected during day to day activity
The data collected plus triangulated findings will inform
program improvement and evolution, in addition to providing a
measure of the extent to which the program goals have been
achieved, at the different points in time when effectiveness
measures are undertaken.
Our work to build a culture of respect is continuing in 2018.
This year's priorities include:
- supporting surgical supervisors to complete the one-day
advanced course in "Operating with Respect", designed to help
attendees identify and deal effectively with unacceptable
- supporting surgical educators to do the Foundation Skills for
Surgical Educators (FSSE) course. Mandatory if you teach or train
SET trainees or supervise IMGs
- identifying and working towards removing perceived and real
barriers to women considering surgery as a career
- launching a peer support program to help those involved in a
complaint through the RACS system
- working closely with our partner hospitals to collaborate on
initiatives for building a respectful culture in healthcare
- implementing the RACS Diversity and Inclusion Plan.
Updated policies and procedures
We have updated many of our policies and procedures to make sure
they reflect RACS commitment to building respect, and improving
Some of the most important policies and procedures we have
developed or updated include:
We have done a lot of work to improve surgical education. We
have developed learning opportunities for surgeons to find out more
about bullying, discrimination and harassment in the workplace and
learn what they can do about it.
- elearning module on DBSH. Mandatory for all College
Fellows, Trainees and IMGs. Integrated with RACS'
continuing professional development program
- Expanded the Foundation Skills for Surgical Educators course,
to strengthen surgical education. Mandatory for surgeons
who teach or train SET trainees or supervise IMGs.
- Operating with Respect face to face advanced training course to
help surgeons deal with discrimination, bullying and sexual
harassment. Mandatory for Surgical
about these courses or register