Gearing up for Doctors Day in May 2015

Dear colleagues and supporters,


Thank you for your generous support of the Twice The Doctor Foundation which has raised approximately $1/4 Million for boosting Sierra Leone health infrastructure, combating Ebola and treating reversible blindness in Kenya (with funds being administered by UNICEF and the Fred Hollows Foundation)


UNICEF’s Chief Executive Norman Gillespie asked me to pass on this message:

“Daily we were receiving heart-wrenching reports of the impact of the Ebola outbreak. Children were among the most susceptible to not only death but the knock on effects of the disease. We could also see the growing burden on health workers. How does a health professional comfort a child who has lost both parents when you can’t touch them for fear of spreading the disease? 

I would like to thank you who have contributed to the Twice The Doctor Foundation, for understanding the magnitude of this crisis and for taking your role as a doctor to another level. Thanks to you we were able to mobilise quickly to do precisely what we’re here to do. You helped provide lifesaving assistance to reach children and their families as well as those on the frontline of the battle against this epidemic. Thank you.”


We are gearing up for our next Doctors Day in May – remembering that the aim is eventually to have a national day of doctors “virtually volunteering” thereby issuing a challenge to other professions and perhaps doctors in other countries to follow our lead.  Plans include a major launch at Royal Prince Alfred Hospital where we anticipate significant media support. You will recall that our concept had coverage on the ABC TV 7.30 report, on national radio and in national medical journals. We had written support and endorsements from the AMA and from foreign minister, Julie Bishop.


However, despite the extensive media coverage, we have found that by far the best way to enrol medical supporters/virtual volunteers is by face to face presentations to our colleagues. In a recent presentation to interns at Gosford Hospital, 90 % “signed on”. Therefore, if you feel you are in a position to help organise talks to groups of doctors, say for 15 minutes or so, please let us know. Better still, if you feel you may be able to deliver the talk yourself and thereby champion the concept at your own hospital, we can certainly provide you with PowerPoint presentations. This was done very successfully last year at Royal North Shore Hospital. Eventually we would like to establish 2-3 “champions” in every major hospital in order to sustain the momentum. Remember, this is a most worthy exercise!


A number of RMOs in particular have pointed out the benefits of direct pay deduction forms as a way to support the Twice the Doctor Foundation. I’m delighted to announce that after considerable effort by one of our directors, Jules Willcocks , this is now available for you to use if you wish – rather than making a lump-sum contribution each May. Also, this way, the tax- deduction is all done. The forms are good throughout NSW Health. This convenient facility should also help us recruit new doctors. (See attachment).


For those who supported last years Doctors Day in May – I am pleased to say that your certificates of appreciation have now been produced,(sorry about the delay),and will be distributed shortly.

Regards to all


Rob Baume

(on behalf of the directors of Twice the Doctor Foundation)