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Victoria’s Chief Health Officer opens up about mental health toll of second COVID-19 wave

Neil Mitchell
Article image for Victoria’s Chief Health Officer opens up about mental health toll of second COVID-19 wave

Victoria’s Chief Health Officer has opened up about his mental health struggles during Victoria’s second COVID-19 wave last year.

He says he had to see a psychologist.

Brett Sutton told the Australian Health Practitioner Regulation Agency podcast he felt a heavy burden making tough decisions to lead the state through the crisis.

He said he felt “awful” as a father and put his job ahead of his family during that period.

“There was a kind of grief in being with my family and not being with family psychologically,” he explained.

“Putting my kids to bed but my mind being elsewhere.

“I felt awful as a father.

“I felt like I was with my children but was absence for weeks and weeks on end, and the reality was that it was kind of true.

“But in reaching out for support, I really found mechanisms to be able to link back in, look after myself and find some space to connect with loved ones which is a really critical thing for us as human beings.”

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(Photo by Asanka Ratnayake/Getty Images)

Neil Mitchell
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