Published by GPEx on July 28, 2021

Dr Harry Nespolon (photo credit – RACGP)

GPEx, South Australia’s sole RTO for the education and training of doctors specialising in General Practice, is proud to be the inaugural winner of the RACGP Foundation Harry Nespolon Research Grant.

Valued at up to $60,000, the Grant will fund a research project into the wellbeing of GPs and/or GPs in training, including factors that support wellbeing, self-care and peer support.

GPEx’s project – Finding meaning through diversity – exploring the role of career and job diversity in GPs’ wellbeing – was awarded the national grant earlier this month.

This research will focus on how career diversity within General Practice can benefit GPs and help avoid burnout, by investigating the diversity of careers available to GPs and how much time they’re dedicating to those careers, and comparing that with burnout levels and social and emotional wellbeing levels.

The project will be led by GPEX Senior Medical Educator, Assoc Prof Jill Benson AM. Jill will support GPEx Senior Medical Educator, Dr Penny Need, and researcher, Mr Shaun Prentice, to undertake this project, which will also contribute to GPEx’s work in building research capacity in General Practice.

Dr Roger Sexton, Medical Director of Doctors’ Health SA and GPEx Board Director, will be on the Steering Group.

“This is a wonderful achievement by our Research and Innovation Team, given that the grant was open nationally with similar grants often being awarded to universities,” said GPEx CEO, Ms Stephanie Clota.

“Winning this grant cements GPEx as a leader in General Practice research.

“We look forward to working on this important project, which will ultimately help to create a stronger and more sustainable future for General Practice by providing an insight into the relationship between career diversity and wellbeing, and what work–life balance means within a GP context.

“We know from other research that GPs who do a diverse range of occupations within the spectrum of General Practice have more sustainable careers in those more challenging areas, like working with vulnerable people,” said Assoc Prof Jill Benson.

“We all want meaning in our life and I think one of the absolute joys of general practice is that you can find that meaning in so many different ways.”

The timeline for the Finding meaning through diversity – exploring the role of career and job diversity in GPs’ wellbeing research project will be August 2021 – August 2022, with final reporting in November 2022.