Skip to main content

Burnout: what you can do to prevent it

An estimated 60% of clinicians experience symptoms of burnout
Dr Claire Ashton-James, has developed a series of interactive programs designed to educate clinicians in dealing with emotionally challenging patient encounters. Programs are delivered in a variety of formats to suit the needs of the clinic or clinician.

Experiencing burnout?

Patients who are sick or experiencing significant pain often express intense negative emotions (anger, fear, despair, shame, guilt, frustration) which, if not managed skillfully by the clinician, can undermine clinicians’ best efforts to arrive at accurate diagnoses or deliver effective treatments.

Without the skills needed to respond to patient emotions, as well as our own emotional responses to difficult patient encounters, it is no wonder we find ourselves emotionally drained at the end of the day.

These skills can be learned through:

1. Individualised clinician coaching

Clinicians are provided with individualized, timely, strengthsbased feedback on their actual encounters with patients. Coaching programs are tailored to the needs of the clinic or clinicians involved.

To register your interest, contact Dr Claire Ashton-James.

2. Online interactive group training

Emotion-focused communication skills

A group of 8-10 clinicians “meet” online for 5 webinars where they will learn evidence-based techniques for recognizing and responding to emotions, present case examples to the group, and engage in group-based problem solving

Registrations closed.

Tuesdays, weekly, 5:00-6:30pm AEST

Session Topic Date
Introduction & Identifying patient emotions August 27
2 Identifying own emotions September 3
3 Responding to patient emotions: theory and practice September 10
4 Responding to your own emotions: theory and practice September 17
5 Final session and case reviews September 24

3. Simulated (role-play) skills workshop

Dealing with emotionally challenging patient encounters.

This one-day small-group skills workshop provides participants with practical, evidence-based tools for recognising and responding to negative emotions and provides a unique opportunity to practice these skills with a professional actor (simulated patient).

CPD Points

This event provides 6 hours of professional development. Participants will receive a certificate of attendance for these hours at the end of the event.

New date to be scheduled for late 2020. Please email if you would like to be notified when registrations open ($275 incl GST).

The one-day "Dealing with Emotionally Challenging Patient Encounters" workshop aims to help clinicians to navigate emotionally challenging patient encounters by providing participants with practical tools for responding to patients negative emotions, and managing their own negative emotional responses to patients.

These "emotion-handling skills" are critical to patient perceptions of clinician empathy, competence, and trustworthiness, and play an important role in maintaining patient engagement in their assessment and treatment planning.

Emotion-handling skills are also crucial to clinicians' wellbeing, and help to protect clinicians from symptoms of burnout and hinder their ability to develop trust and rapport with patients.

Key features

  • Interactive workshop
  • In-vivo skills demonstration and opportunities to practice
  • Individualised feedback and support
  • Six hours of CPD
Date New date to be scheduled for late 2020. Please email if you would like to be notified when registrations open.
Time TBC
Venue Kolling Building
Royal North Shore Hospital
Reserve Road
St Leonards

Visitor parking map

$275 incl. GST

Registration includes morning tea, lunch and afternoon tea. 

Registration Registrations currently closed.
Time Session
9.30 - 10.00am Session 1
Introductory session
10.00 - 10.45am Session 2
Identifying patient emotions and identifying own emotions
10.45 - 11.00am Morning tea
11.00 - 11.45am Session 3
Responding to patient emotions: theory
11.45 - 12.30pm Session 4
Responding to patient emotions: practie
12.30 - 1.00pm Lunch
1.00 - 2.15pm Session 5
Responding to your own emotions: theory and demonstration
2.15 - 2.30pm Afternoon tea
2.35 - 3.30pm Session 6
Responding to our own emotions: practice
3.35 - 4.00pm Session 7
Review of goal progress and feedback/evaluation

*Subject to change

Dr Claire

Presented by:

Dr Claire Ashton-James
Dr Ashton-James is an established researcher and experienced teacher/trainer in clinician communication and emotion-handling skills. Her workshops are interactive, participant-led, evidence-based, thought-provoking, and promise to challenge assumptions about what "good communication" looks like.