Cultivating Safe Teams Pilot Program – a THRIVE initiative

26 May 2023

Earlier this year we announced our intention to launch a pilot program that would support veterinarians and veterinary teams to build a psychologically safe working environment.

AVA is proud to champion the THRIVE Cultivating Safe Teams pilot program which will deliver tailored psychological health and safety awareness training in the workplace for all members of the veterinary team. This pilot program will be available free of charge for 50 participating workplaces across Australia between September 2023 and December 2024.

The purpose of the program is to:

  1. Articulate the definitions of psychological health and safety, workplace culture and ‘safe teams’ for veterinary and animal health businesses
  2. Provide evidence-based and strengths-based examples of a safe team
  3. Inspire individuals to consider how they can help build a safe veterinary team through personal responsibility and accountability
  4. Encourage practice leaders, managers, and entire teams to define and commit to cultivating a workplace that is safe, equitable and well.

AVA is working with Aspect Group, a leading provider of workplace psychological health and safety solutions, to co-design and deliver the training program face-to-face over an 18-month period. Participants and their workplaces will be asked to sign an industry pledge stating their commitment to cultivating a safe and mentally healthy workplace. They will be provided with resources to support their training, including an industry specific mental health and suicide prevention framework.

Safeguarding and promoting mental health and well-being in the workplace is a whole-of-industry responsibility – employers and employees can all play a part in minimising psychosocial hazards and promoting psychosocial safety.

AVA is leading this exciting new initiative for the profession. To see this flourish beyond the pilot phase we will need all veterinary stakeholders to make the commitment to preventing harm from psychosocial hazards in the industry; promoting strengths, capabilities, and the rewards of work; and protecting all of us when we experience stress and are unwell.

If you would like to express your interest to participate in the pilot program, please complete your details here on our website.

Dr David Andrews