Category: Opinion

Brexit and the decimation of the NHS

Peter Burke is currently a portfolio GP in Oxford. A potted bio with declaration of interests is available at the end of the article. The Romans had a word, decimation. Decimation meant that if a Legion rebelled, one in ten soldiers, regardless of guilt or innocence, would be taken out at random and put to the sword. I am a GP and by chance one in ten of my medical colleagues in the NHS are nationals of other EU countries. Hold that thought, I will come back to it. Let me now tell you a story of Eva, not...

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Reflections on Moria: a shameful humanitarian crisis

Philippa Jeacocke is a GP trainee in Sheffield currently taking a year Out of Programme Experience (OOPE) between ST2 and ST3 to further explore her interest in refugee health and palliative care. In August 2018 I spent a month working as a volunteer doctor with MedGlobal in Moria camp on Lesvos. MedGlobal is working to support the existing Greek governmental clinic in Moria known as “Keelpno” by providing an extra doctor. As such, during my shifts I worked alongside the Greek Keelpno medical team as well as volunteers from Kitrionos (another medical NGO supporting the clinic) and refugees from...

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Life is a dance: Blaming it on the boogie

Peter Aird is a GP in Bridgwater, Somerset. Recently The Guardian, and others, reported that doctors were alarmed that an online test which estimated cardiological health revealed that 78% of adults had a heart age older than their chronological age and were, therefore, at risk of an early death. What was even more alarming, at least for one Somerset man, was that despite having normal blood pressure, a cholesterol comfortably below five and a weight in the healthy range, the computer based algorithm insisted on saying ‘No’ to his question as to whether he’d live to a ripe old...

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A coffee-break conversation about part-time working

Luke Allen is a GP academic clinical fellow at Oxford University. A coffee-break conversation about flexible part-time working and relational continuity Sam (early-mid career GP): Hey, can I grab you for a minute to talk about my hours? Charlie (senior GP partner): Of course, in fact I was hoping to discuss something with you too – about trying to ensure that our patients see the same professional at each visit. Sam: Right, that ‘relational continuity’ seems to be a hot topic right now doesn’t it. And I totally get it too. Seeing the same patient each time helps as...

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And I guess that’s why they call it the blues

Peter Aird is a GP in Bridgwater, Somerset. Like the one whose taste in music veers consistently and increasingly away from societal norms and thus is destined to spend too much time sat in darkened rooms accompanied only by an empty bottle and the conviction that only he or she knows how music really ought to sound, it can be a lonely experience seeing things differently to the majority. Nevertheless, it needs to be said that it’s not unusual, in this vale of tears, for it to be hard to be human. Neither is it abnormal. We live in...

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