Colourful show of mental health support

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Best feet forward: RAAF group captain and orthopaedic and trauma surgeon Annette Holian, left, CEO, Ambulance Victoria CEO Tony Walker, Peninsula Health cardioligist Dr Geoff Toogood, Frankston MP Paul Edbrooke and Peninsula Health CEO Felicity Topp show support for the #CrazySocks4Docs day. Picture: Gary Sissons

A DOCTOR at Frankston Hospital launched the second annual #CrazySocks4Docs day on Friday (1 June).

Dr Geoff Toogood started the campaign to encourage doctors, medical students and health professionals worldwide to wear zany and bright socks to support doctors’ mental health.

Medical professionals who don crazy socks are encouraged to publish photos using the #CrazySocks4Docs hashtag to show doctors dealing with depression are not alone and should speak up for help.

Dr Toogood, a Beaumaris resident, started the campaign last year after his own experiences with mental illness.

“The purpose of #CrazySocks4Docs is to raise awareness about mental illness in the medical profession and also to get doctors to start talking about it,” he said.

“Having a conversation with your friends, family or colleagues about your mental health is the first step. Doctors need to look after each other so that we can look after everyone else.”

Peninsula Health executive director of medical services Dr Tim Williams said doctors’ mental health “is extremely important”.

“Peninsula Health is working to ensure our medical staff have access to all the support they need not only to provide world-class care to patients but also to look after their own mental wellbeing.”

Support and information about suicide prevention can be obtained at Lifeline on 13 11 14 or the Suicide Call Back Service on 1300 659 467.

First published in the Frankston Times – 4 June 2018

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