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Thriving Resources

Help I'm going rural!

If you are an intern about to take up a community service post in a rural hospital or just moving to a rural area read our info for community service for helpful tips so you will survive and thrive in rural. Once you are at your new place of work look out for our annual OnBoarding Programme on what you need to know to survive in a district hospital.

Taking Care is a group of doctors (2 are rural doctors) that run a variety of wellness workshops , online and at venues, to prevent Burnout & depression in health care workers. You can do a quick check on the site to see if you have Burnout. There are a number of good resources on the web. https://www.takingcare.co.za

Survive and Thrive

RuDASA is committed to finding or developing tools and support structures for Rural Clinicians so that they can not only survive, but thrive in rural areas. We currently offer an On-Boarding programme for community service and working on developing a Mentoring Programme which will include: Rural Buddies, Rural Champions, Rural Retreats, and a long term goal of a formal Mentoring CPD event. In 2021 EC ran our first 'Onboarding' programme for community service officers. This got an excellent response and will now be an annual event starting late January/early February each year.

The Wellness for Effective Leadership (WEL) Programme is a personal development course designed to assist managers in the public sector to improve their wellness, to develop their emotional intelligence and personal and interpersonal competencies, and to deal effectively with stress and the risks of burnout. The programme was developed in 2009 in response to a crisis in service delivery in a rural area, and now maintains a strong focus on improving wellness in order to improve service delivery.

SADAG is Africa’s largest mental health support and advocacy group, serving as a support network for the thousands of South Africans who live with mental health problems. It has on its board a powerful team of Patients, Psychiatrists, Psychologists, and General Practitioners. SADAG manages a 16-line counselling-and-referral call centre, and is the voice of patient advocacy, working in urban, peri-urban, and the most rural communities across South Africa. Find out about their Rural Outreach.

Thriving in Rural Health looks at three aspects important to thriving as a doctor in a rural health setting:

  • Tools to strengthen resilience in yourself and your colleagues
  • Simplified approaches to improve and change inefficient systems in the workplace
  • Practical and legal aspects of healthcare worker reporting (VOICE)

Survive and Thrive Students

From 2018 RuDASA has committed to develop a 'Survive & Thrive' mentoring programme to support Interns and Young Doctors. The emphasis is on helping young doctors transition from their student role and adapt to working in rural areas. We hope that our enthusiastic rural champions will help make the transition day, and inspire you to be part of the #Imstayingrural cohort!

This programme includes access to our Learning Portal, sharing with colleagues through Doctor Dialogue and the occasional Rural Doctors Retreat. Our first Rural Doctors Retreat was held in Eastern Cape in 2020 and looked at preventing Burnout, how to VOICE your concerns, and beginning to create your own rural network. participants recommended that this be an annual event and be rolled out to the other provinces. In 2021 Eastern Cape extended their orientation programme to a 6 week 'OnBoarding' series of lecturers and resources.