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  • We did it! The declaration has been amended to include; I WILL ATTEND TO my own health, well-being, and abilities in order to provide care of the highest standard....

  • This Month's Exceptional Doctor: Dr Patrick McCarthy is New Zealand’s only medically certified hypnotherapist. Click on his image and discover his exceptional story...

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  • Mindfulness – new age rah rah or real?

    There’s a lot of talk about mindfulness these days, with some pretty big benefit claims. But is this just new age rah rah or are there real, demonstrated, benefits of mindfulness? And more specifically, is it of benefit to doctors? Five key benefits of mindfulness training According to “Doing and Being: Mindfulness, Health, and Quiet Ego Characteristics among Buddhist Practitioners,” the 2011 research article that published the survey results in the Journal of Happiness Studies (12(4): 575-589), there were five key ways that mindfulness training increased physical and mental health:   It strengthened immune system and physiological responses to stress and negative emotions. It improved social relationships with family and strangers. It reduced stress, depression, and anxiety and increased well-being and happiness. It increased openness to experience, conscientiousness, and agreeableness and reduced negative associations with neuroticism. It led to greater psychological mindfulness, which included an awareness that is clear, nonconceptual, and flexible; a practical stance toward reality; and present attention to the individual’s consciousness and awareness. "One of the surprising findings of this study and what some others are coming up with is how much of a difference it makes to focus your mind and calm down. It actually makes a large difference in your well-being.” Meditative mindfulness practices have been shown to positively alter the structure and neural patterns in the brain and strengthen the brain regions associated with heightened sensory processing and empathetic response. Therefore, individuals who regularly practices mindfulness training are quite literally reforming the structure of their brains to achieve desired outcomes. “We are finding more and more that the human brain is quite adaptable, as we have learnt that the brain reroutes information through new neuropathways, so in addition to the mind being adaptable, the brain too has this quality,” author of a study conducted at Northern Arizona University, Bruce Sullivan explains. Individuals who said they meditated even once a day reported greater psychological mindfulness.  
  • Dr Patrick McCarthy's Key Topics of Thought

    New Zealand’s only medically certified hypnotherapist, Dr Patrick McCarthy, is the author of two books; Relax, Say Goodbye to Anxiety and Panic and Quit, Say Goodbye to Smoking. Patrick is also a recognised international speaker on the subject and considered a world expert on obstetric hypnosis.  

    Dr Tash Thompson's Key Topics of Thought

    Tash Thompson is a Paediatric Registrar at the Royal Children’s Hospital in Melbourne. In conversation with Dr Sam Hazledine, Tash talks about her unusual route into medicine. Tash studied biomedical science and gained a graduate diploma in education before studying to become a doctor – an interest she’d had since high school.   Some key ideas from her conversation with Sam are below.  
  • Dr Patrick McCarthy's Exceptional Story

    Dr Patrick McCarthy is New Zealand’s only medically certified hypnotherapist. A qualified general practitioner, he initially studied hypnosis to help one of his patients, a pregnant lady who had anxiety around giving birth. He is now an internationally recognised author and lecturer on the subject and has run a specialist medical hypnotherapy clinic in Wellington since 1996.    Hypnotherapy has been recognised as a form of therapy by the American and British Medical Associations since the 1950s, but is not so well known in New Zealand. In his conversation with Dr Sam Hazledine, Patrick discusses New Zealand’s ‘pessimistic’ problem and how doctors can tackle stress and anxiety using a simple, quick technique.   

    Dr Tash Thompson's Exceptional Story

    Tash Thompson is a Paediatric Registrar at the Royal Children’s Hospital in Melbourne.   Her medical career has been an unusual one. She studied biomedical science and gained a graduate diploma in education before studying to become a doctor – an interest she’d had since high school.