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Burnout, depression and anxiety – why the NHS has a problem with staff health

May 2nd, 2017 by

Despite efforts from NHS England to improve the wellbeing of its staff, progress has been inconsistent and employee ill-health remains widespread

When Laura-Jane Smith took time out of her clinical training for a PhD, she found she was constantly unhappy, and suffered from palpitations, nausea, severe headaches, and breathlessness among other physical symptoms.

The hospital doctor’s days were dominated by negative thoughts. She recalls: “I once walked for 30 minutes with ‘I hate my life. I hate my life’ on a loop of internal monologue that I feared had no end.” Eventually, Smith was diagnosed with depression and anxiety and ended up leaving the PhD.

Related: Has the public sector lost the human touch?

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