I’ll keep this brief

On the 20th of December 2019, when the year was in wrap up mode for many of us, I wrote an article for our newsletter paying tribute to health and human service leaders throughout Australasia and to their remarkable teams. Coming into that period White (Whakaari) Island in New Zealand had erupted taking and changing people’s lives for ever and bush fires were raging in Australia, placing lives and livelihoods at risk.

The emergency and healthcare systems of both countries stood up. Many of those women and men didn’t get a break, or only got a brief break, as one year clicked over to the next. I think it is really important we remember that as they are called on once again to face a far more significant challenge. For those like me who aren’t in the frontline of healthcare anymore we can feel a bit impotent when we know full well our colleagues and friends are ‘gutsing’ it out.

Aside from doing our best to step up senior medical recruitment and deploy scarce locum resource, our Sets program has moved online. It is keeping tight groups of members connected across borders and the sea (virtually) so they can snatch whatever time they have together to share concerns (confidentially), share ideas and approaches and galvanise each other.

Leadership can be an isolating experience at the best of times and I hope in some small way Sets are helping to ameliorate that, even if just a little over the coming weeks and months ahead…. Beyond our admiration for you and the comprehensive response you are leading, my team and I as a minor player in this will do whatever it takes to support you and your teams.