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Frontline emergency workers to get specialised mental health support from peers

Frontline emergency service workers needing mental health support often don’t feel understood by mainstream counsellors, but a new tailored program may help change that. A unique counselling program developed in Hobart for defence veterans is now been considered for emergency service workers in Tasmania. Program founder Jon Lane, Australia’s first military psychiatrist to serve in

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Emergency workers seeking mental health support on the rise

Emergency services personnel are increasingly seeking mental health support for work-related conditions, experts have said. Counsellors and psychologists are reporting a surge in police, firefighters and ambulance staff reaching out for help, either through self-referral or through their employer. Canberra registered counsellor David Nielsen, who has been in the profession for 20 years, said recently

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Rise of the Female Firefighter: Bushfire Brigade Ranks Filling Up With Women

Female firefighters across the country are increasingly taking on frontline volunteer roles that were once the sole preserve of men. Traditionally, the New South Wales Rural Fire Service’s volunteers were drawn from rural landholders with men fighting the fires and women in support roles. But the service has made a concerted effort to encourage women

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How Fire, Police and Ambulance Emergency Responders Deal with Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder

Think of our emergency services and the traumatic scenes we expect these police, ambulance and fire staff to cope with mentally as part of their everyday jobs in our community. How do they deal with the harrowing sights that greet them at car crashes or fires where someone is killed?  How do they live a

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TAS Union Calls for PTSD Law Changes

Tasmania’s largest health union is calling for legislative change so paramedics have easier access to post traumatic stress disorder treatment. The Health and Community Services Union (HACSU) has submitted a discussion paper to the state government and wants PTSD to be recognised as a prescribed disease under the Workers Rehabilitation and Compensation Act. Currently, it’s

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Half of Hospital Doctors Work ‘Unsafe Hours’, Audit Reveals

More than half of doctors in Australia’s public hospitals are working unsafe hours — some more than 70 hours in a single shift. A new audit by the Australian Medical Association found that 53 per cent were on rosters that placed them at significant or higher risk of fatigue. Intensive care physicians and surgeons were

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PTSD: Call for State Government to Recognise Occupational Stress as Cause

Emergency services personnel suffering post traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) are calling on the State Government to legally recognise occupational stress as a cause for the condition. Niddrie man Matt Ross has spent the past year clawing his way back from the brink of darkness after years of exposure to trauma during a 20-plus-year career as a

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