Dr Yvette Morcos of the Mulungu Aboriginal Corporation Primary Health Care Service was named the Queensland General Practice Supervisor of the Year at an award ceremony in Brisbane on 20 October 2021.

Dr Morcos was awarded for her commitment to supporting the careers of junior General Practitioners (GP).

Dr Morcos has a passion for improving the health outcomes for First Nations people and their families.

“I hope my enthusiasm is rubbing off on GPs in training because I want as many doctors as possible to be involved in Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander health,” Dr Morcos said in an earlier statement.

Dr Morcos said the award had been a surprise as she was unaware of her nomination.

“After the initial shock, I was very happy, excited, and extremely flattered to realise that my registrar thought so highly of me as a mentor that she would vote for me,” she said.

“I called my family and friends to share the good news.”

Gail Wason, CEO of Mulungu was effusive in her praise for Dr Morcos and the contribution she has made to the health service.

“Dr Morcos cares!” Ms Wason said. 

“She is passionate about our people and in particular our mob getting the best health care.

“She felt that the old health check template did not give her or other GPs a real insight into the person and made positive changes to this template, and trained staff in the use of the template giving rationale to why these questions are needed.

“She is willing to go above and beyond; even ringing clients after hours on the weekend and at night to ensure there is follow-through.  

“She has attracted other GPs due to her lovely personality, and she has built a great team spirit within the clinical team.”

So, what makes a good GP supervisor in the opinion of Dr Morcos?

“I believe that a good GP supervisor provides an environment in which registrars feel supported and respected and are free to confidently ask any question or put forward any suggestion, knowing that they will be heard, and their ideas treated with serious consideration,” she said.

“We all learn from experience, and I love passing on my experience to my registrars. 

“It is important to encourage their growth as doctors, both for their own benefit and for the benefit of the community and the profession. 

“I also encourage all of my registrars to help and to learn from each other. 

“To facilitate this, I organise regular teaching sessions and case conferences at the clinic.”

Dr Morcos knows that being a GP, especially a rural GP, is both highly rewarding and highly challenging.

“GP registrars need guidance and support in decision-making and in managing patients. 

“GP registrars benefit from our experience and knowledge. 

“Learning to be an effective GP is an ongoing process and I see my role as a supervisor as an integral part of the process of training and retaining effective and knowledgeable early-career GPs.”