Black Medics Forum Achievements
Doctors in Distress with the Black Medics Forum would welcome your ideas about how the group can best support black doctors going forward, and how it could be made easier for members to actively participate. We are aware that these are demanding times for doctors and that everyone is dealing with capacity, timings, exams, additional work demands.
What we have achieved:
The Black Medics Forum was formed last year to support the health needs of black doctors in the workplace. About 60 members signed up. Between one quarter and one third of this number have actively engaged in video meetings. We have met on seven occasions. It has been a unique and powerful experience for those who have attended.
We have created a safe place where isolated doctors have been able to have in-depth conversations about their experiences, feelings, and subsequent impacts on the health on the background of historical and current society/structural issues.
These have been expressed and validated with accepted mental health, psychological, psychodynamic, socio-political and historical concepts, models and evidence.
Doctors have been able to explore issues that have remained taboo for decades of their lives.
While it has been supportive and enlightening, the doctors (being doctors) have proposed some sort of meaningful and measurable intervention to address the challenges within medicine and maybe further afield.
We have been approached by Amara Elahi, health correspondent from the BBC who is making a programme about the experience of BAME doctors in the context of the pandemic. I have shared some of our experiences with her and she hopes to engage further with any willing members of the group to contribute to the programme.
In February 2020 we will look at the needs of the group, with a view to continue providing a space for offloading, experience-sharing, reflection, interpretation, analysis, support and advice.
We would welcome your ideas about how the group can best support black doctors going forward, and how it could be made easier for members to actively partake.
We would also like interested members to express by email whether they would like to contribute to the ongoing work of chronicling, creating and delivering engagement activity.
Dr Leon Francis, Black Medics Forum