24 November 2016
The New Zealand Private Surgical Hospitals Association (NZPSHA)
has signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with the Royal
Australasian College of Surgeons (RACS) to build respect and
improve patient safety in surgery.
The MoU, a collaboration formed under the RACS 2015 Action Plan:
Building Respect, Improving Patient Safety, is the third to be
signed in New Zealand, following an agreement with the Nelson
Marlborough District Health Board signed earlier today.
Under the Agreement, RACS and the NZPSHA have committed to
working together to ensure that surgical supervisors have the
necessary skills and attributes and are supported to provide
training, assessment, feedback and support to Trainees and
International Medical Graduates (IMGs), free from discrimination,
bullying and sexual harassment (DBSH).
The work also aims to ensure that the healthcare workplace is an
environment free of DBSH.
RACS Vice-President Professor Spencer Beasley said that bullying
had been a real problem for the surgical profession, as it had been
across the health sector, but now was the time to build a culture
of respect and improve patient safety.
"Hospital wards, operating
theatres and outpatient clinics are areas where surgical education
and health service employment overlaps.
"Both RACS and the NZPSHA strongly support the rights of all
healthcare professionals to a safe training and work environment
where they can realise their full potential, free from DBSH.
"We know that if we can improve the culture of medicine, and
surgery in particular, we can expect better patient outcomes. This
is a powerful reason why we wish to work together with this
initiative," Prof Beasley said.
NZPSHA Executive Member Dr Lloyd McCann stated that he was
pleased that the NZPSHA and RACS had formalised their shared
commitment to providing high quality training, education and
experience in the practice of surgery.
"This partnership is about
ensuring patient safety by improving work environments, underpinned
by our shared values of integrity and respect," he said.
"The NZPSHA represents a number of surgical providers in the
private surgical component of the health sector in New Zealand and
has a common interest with RACS in dealing with these issues and we
will collaborate with RACS in addressing them," Dr McCann said.
Specific initiatives include:
- collaborate on the development of programs and processes to
deal with discrimination, bullying, and sexual harassment
- Sharing information and resources around the education and
training available with the respective institutions
- Ensuring that surgeons and vocationally registered IMGs are
able to undertake required training and education in relation to
- Exploring a process for the sharing of relevant
In May 2016, RACS launched Let's Operate with Respect - a
campaign to help deal effectively with discrimination, bullying and
sexual harassment in surgery. RACS has also published a dedicated
new section of its website, About Respect.
Download full media release (PDF 379KB)