AMA Doctor in Training of the Year 2019
An obstetrics registrar who developed her own training program for gynaecological surgery after returning to work from maternity leave has been named the AMA Doctor in Training of the Year for 2019.
Dr Rebecca Ryder, a senior registrar at Sunshine Coast University Hospital, was presented with her award tonight by AMA President, Dr Tony Bartone, at the AMA National Conference in Brisbane.
“Dr Ryder has all the attributes of a great clinician and a great leader, with her commitment to learning, training, mentoring, and safe practice,” Dr Bartone said.
“Her colleagues, who nominated her for this award, describe her as a natural leader, as approachable, compassionate, sensible, and decisive.
“She is passionate about the wellbeing of doctors in training, and is currently completing a research project on trainee resilience. In the first study of its kind, she has surveyed every obstetrics and gynaecology trainee in Australia and New Zealand.
“She aims to use her study as another platform to advocate for the fair treatment of trainees, and for workplace reforms to reduce bullying.
“She has also put her own experiences to practical use in training and teaching. When she returned to work in 2017 from maternity leave, she recognised that her prior gynaecological surgical experience was limited, and developed her own upskilling program.
“Her template is now used to teach laparoscopic surgical skills to other junior trainees.
“She has also, in her own time, assisted in surgery with a private gynaecologist, giving her experience in procedures she would not see in a public gynaecology setting.
“She has been actively involved with the Royal Australian and New Zealand College of Obstetricians and Gynaecologists (RANZCOG), as a trainee representative and a hospital re-accreditation team member.
“She has run the RANZCOG basic obstetrics skills workshop for junior registrars for the past two years, leads a monthly education meeting with the group practice midwives, and is a strong advocate for collaborative maternity care practices.
“Dr Ryder has been an effective mentor to junior registrars, and meets monthly with her fellow registrars to check on their wellbeing.
“She also put her impressive organisational and negotiation skills to excellent use in 2018, organising a ball for Queensland Trainees and Fellows in aid of White Ribbon, the domestic violence awareness charity.
“The event was sold out, and raised more than $9,000 for White Ribbon. RANZCOG Queensland has undertaken to run a similar fundraiser every two years, and Dr Ryder has agreed to coordinate the organising committee for the next one.
“Somehow, she manages to balance her responsibilities as the mother of two young children with her high workload as a senior registrar, and her mentoring and charitable work.
“While she is an outstanding clinician and leader, she remains humble, friendly, and responsive to feedback.
“With her outstanding skills, work ethic, achievement to date, and her potential, she is a very worthy winner of the AMA Doctor in Training of the Year Award.”
24 May 2019
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AMA DOCTOR IN TRAINING OF THE YEAR AWARD 2019 FULL CITATION
DR REBECCA RYDER
MBBS (Hons), RANZCOG Advanced Trainee
Dr Rebecca Ryder has been the Senior Registrar in the Department of Obstetrics and Gynaecology at Sunshine Coast University Hospital (SCUH) since 2017. She first joined the Department in 2015, when she was in her second year of RANZCOG training. Her potential as an O&G Registrar and Consultant became obvious, as she performed at a very high level, then passed each of her RANZCOG assessments at the first attempt, and exhibited many other desirable professional attributes, such as leadership, advocacy, team building, and a commitment to safe practice.
She chose to return to Sunshine Coast in 2017, following her appointment as a senior Registrar, to complete her final two years of RANZCOG training. During 2017, she had been elected as a RANZCOG Trainee representative for Qld, whose role was to raise matters that affected RANZCOG training in Qld and Australia with the relevant RANZCOG Training Accreditation committee, whether State or Federal. Her performance in this role has been exemplary.
Dr Ryder’s high level of self -motivation and aptitude for learning is reflected in her current knowledge and skills. When she returned to SCUH in 2017, after a period of maternity leave, she recognised her prior gynaecological surgical experience was limited. She sought appropriate help and developed her own upskilling program for surgical skills that resulted in her acquiring high-level skills in advanced gynaecological laparoscopic and uro-gynaecology procedures. That up-skilling program template is now used in the Department to teach laparoscopic surgical skills to other junior trainees.
She has further extended her surgical skills by assisting at surgical procedures with a private Gynaecologist, exposing her to procedures she would not see in a public gynaecology setting. She has done this in her own time.
Dr Ryder is a natural leader. She is approachable, compassionate, sensible and decisive. As a Senior Registrar she has stepped up capably into a Consultant role with oversight and has shown excellent clinical judgement and decision-making in this position.
As a senior Registrar, she has been an effective mentor to the junior Registrars and PHOs. She is a great communicator and displays insight and reliability in her senior Registrar role. She has given outstanding support to the RANZCOG trainees’ needs and meets monthly with her fellow registrars to ensure their wellbeing. She is considered and well-liked by her colleagues, and other members of the Maternity Care team.
Dr Ryder is a keen and motivated teacher and educator. She has been actively involved in the education of medical students and junior doctors. She has run the RANZCOG Basic Obstetrics Skills workshop for the junior registrars in the last two years. She also leads the monthly education meeting with the Group Practice midwives, is a strong advocate for collaborative maternity care practices, and has a major role in midwife and medical student teaching.
In the past 12 months, Dr Ryder has been the Department’s lead for Gynaecology Mortality and Morbidity, and has organised and co-ordinated review meetings that have reviewed the past six months’ gynaecological surgical incidence and outcomes, with a focus on safety and quality, and improving care. She has an intuitive understanding of patient safety, and uses evidence and data to improve surgical outcomes in the Department.
She one of our lead clinicians participating in our Women’s’ Healthcare Australasia (WHA) Perineal Care Bundle to implement methods to reduce the incidence of 3rd and 4th degree tears at SCUH. When this project concluded, Dr Ryder took a lead role in initiating and developing a dedicated Obstetrics Anal Sphincter Injury (OASIs) outpatients’ clinic, in collaboration with relevant allied health and surgical specialties.
As a mother of two young children and a Senior Registrar with a high workload, Dr Ryder has been able to effectively demonstrate it is possible to balance her work and time her time with family.
Further evidence of Dr Ryder’s leadership can be seen in her commitment to advocacy for junior doctors’ wellbeing. As mentioned above, she represented the trainees at RANZCOG for the past two years, after being elected by her peers in Queensland. During this time, she has advocated for and supported many trainees in difficulty. She is currently completing a research project on trainee resilience, where she has polled every O&G trainee in Australia and New Zealand, the first study of its kind ever undertaken. This should provide another platform for her to advocate for the fair treatment of trainees and should provide further impetus for workplace reforms to reduce workplace bullying.
Since completing her tenure as RANCOG Trainee Representative, she has volunteered regularly to conduct hospital re-accreditation visits with RANZCOG teams. These teams visit all RANZCOG training sites over a four year period, and accredit and re-accredit training sites against RANZCOG’s national standards. It is essential that Trainees are involved in such visits, and Dr Ryder’s contribution has again been exemplary.
In October 2018, she organised a ball for Queensland Trainees and Fellows, which was held at Customs House in Brisbane, in aid of White Ribbon, the domestic violence charity. This was the first such initiative conducted by RANZCOG in Qld. Her excellent organisational and negotiation skills, dedication and eye for detail made the event an outstanding success. The event was sold out with about 150 people attending, and it raised over nine thousand dollars for White Ribbon charity. Since the event, RANZCOG Qld has undertaken to run another ball, or similar fund-raiser, every 2 years. She has agreed to co-ordinate the Organising Committee for the next ball.
While Dr Ryder is an outstanding clinician and leader, she remains humble, friendly and responsive to feedback. She always professional in her workplace behaviour. She is diplomatic and always acts with a calm and thoughtful approach. She is open, polite, empathetic and respectful of her colleagues and senior staff. She communicates well and works well in a team. She is an integral part of the O&G team, who feel privileged to have her as a work colleague, and it would be a deserved honour for her if her outstanding skills, work ethic, achievements to date, and her potential are recognised by the AMA.
Published: 24 May 2019