Friendly rivalry creates golden opportunity for career advice

Experience triumphed youth in the inaugural Blacktown Hospital Consultants vs JMOs indoor soccer match.

Junior doctors at Blacktown Hospital are feeling empowered thanks to a friendly football competition that produced some unexpected benefits.

You’d back a team from emergency, anaesthetics, paediatrics, infectious diseases, urology and nephrology in a medical emergency or a trivia competition, but it turns out they even shine on the indoor soccer pitch.

The makeshift squad officially has bragging rights over the junior doctors following a thrilling 9-7 victory in their recent inaugural match.

Junior doctor Joy Akrawi came up with the idea of an indoor soccer match, saying she was initially just looking for some healthy competition.

Anaesthetist Dr Simon Collins shows off his ‘best and fairest’ award, as well as the array of healthy refreshments provided by residents.

“Little did I know that the night would provide such a great opportunity for us junior doctors to get to know the consultants,” Joy said.

“It was humbling to be able to casually converse with such experienced specialists who hold high positions in our hospital. Beyond the friendly conversations were opportunities to talk to different specialists about how we can get to where we want to be in medicine.

“It was actually such a great way to receive advice, guidance and build foundational relationships with our senior colleagues.”

Infectious diseases physician Jeremy Brown said while youth and enthusiasm are important, the key to victory was “experience, wisdom and the fear of hurting your boss”.

“This match is part of a larger campaign to get more interaction throughout the medical hierarchy, and fostering a culture where juniors feel empowered to have important discussions about their patients, and their careers, with consultants who might sometimes seem quite distant from the junior doctor experience,” Jeremy said.

“The consultants will welcome a rematch when their muscles stop aching, early next year.”

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