Two bullying cases involving junior docs reported and settled since August, Sarawak assembly told

KUCHING: Two bullying cases involving housemen and junior doctors have been reported in Sarawak since the Health Ministry set up its independent healthcare work culture improvement task force in August.

State Deputy Public Health, Housing and Local Government Minister Michael Tiang said both cases had been investigated and resolved.

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To prevent further occurrences, he said the state Health Department had taken steps to conduct regular meetings between house officers and hospital directors.

“This provides opportunities for the house officers to channel their concerns to Schomos (the Section Concerning House Officers, Medical Officers and Specialists) and the Malaysian Medical Association.

“The Counselling and Psychiatry Department is also involved (and will) provide mental support for all healthcare workers,” he told Ibrahim Baki (GPS-PBB) during question time in the Sarawak Legislative Assembly on Friday (Nov 25).

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In addition, Tiang said the Health Ministry had launched a new online workplace bullying complaints channel called MyHelp in October.

“This is an additional channel allowing complainants to report workplace bullying directly to the ministry’s Integrity Unit,” he said.

To a supplementary question from Ibrahim, Tiang said the number of new house officers reporting for duty in Sarawak had decreased in the last three years, from 270 in 2020 and 222 last year to 158 this year.

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“This could be due to the new placement system adopted by the Health Ministry allowing fresh medical graduates to choose the hospital for their housemanship training,” he said.

He also said four hospitals in the state were capable of providing housemanship training: the Sarawak General Hospital in Kuching, Hospital Sibu, Hospital Miri and Hospital Bintulu.