I manage a public mental health service for children and young people with severe mental health problems. The service employs 23 experienced mental health clinicians most of whom have worked in this field for many years and all of whom are committed to the provision of quality mental health services.
Our ability to continue providing any ongoing mental health care disappears without our psychiatrists If our doctors leave we will effectively be unable to function within 4 weeks. Whilst our nursing and allied health professionals will continue to provide a service the governments own rules and standards make it impossible to meet safe practice standards without access to doctors.
Over recent months health public servants have been subjected to continuous attempts to devalue their efforts, integrity and comittment to their patients, culminating in the current cynical attacks on our medical colleagues. It is hard to escape the conclusion that the current crisis is the beginning of a strategy to dismantle public health care by destabilising a professional group that is critical to the functioning of every other health profession.
I do not readily make comment on such issues but as a clinician and manager responsible for the effective functioning of a group of mental health professionals I can not stand by and watch the crippling effect of uncertainty and insecurity on my colleagues

John