Peer Support: The power of colleagues to help us heal

On Monday, October 19, we had the pleasure of hearing from PSI visiting scholar and Harvard physician Dr. Jo Shapiro on the topic of peer support. The special presentation was hosted by the Physician Wellness Advisory Committee comprised of Kingston Health Sciences Centre, Queen’s University, Providence Care, and SEAMO. Dr. Shapiro discussed the culture of Medicine, acute events and chronic stressors that put an extraordinary burden on physicians.  The emotional impact of medical errors was discussed along with the importance of removing the stigma of shame and blame.  Dr. Shapiro also spoke about when and how peer support should be offered in the workplace, how to deal with issues of confidentiality, and how COVID-19 specifically has affected physicians.  If you didn’t have the chance to join us for this inspiring special presentation, watch the video.

If you are interested in learning more about peer support, physician wellness and mindful meditation, please check out these three books recommended by Dr. Shapiro. Click on the book titles for more information:

Attending: Medicine, Mindfulness and Humanity by Ron Epstein, M.D.

A Long Walk Out of the Woods by Adam Hill, M.D.

Wherever You Go, There You Are by Jon Kabat-Zinn, Ph. D.

Important: Dr. Shapiro is offering training sessions for those wanting to further their knowledge in the field of peer support. The training sessions will provide: (1) an overview of the fundamentals of peer support, (2) simulation of peer support and (3) scripted peer support conversation prompts. Please email Christine Mandy to learn more.

Stay tuned for additional information coming from the Physician Wellness Advisory Committee.