Wednesday, April 08, 2009

A decade

I really haven't been very good at keeping up with this blogging lark.

Part of the problem is my decision at the outset NOT to be anonymous. Consequently, much of the material others publish is not possible here as I have no wish to identify anyone, even if inadvertently, that I have seen in surgery.

Nevertheless, this week marks my tenth year at Manor Park. I think that deserves a mention.

I initially wrote a long piece about my time at the practice so far but frankly it was boring. However, the fact is that it can be summarised quite briefly: The patients keep coming because they need us, we are seeing more and more people all the time, I am still enjoying the clinical side of things greatly. The admin side of things gets increasingly onerous as time goes by. The "light-touch, high-trust" contract which was brought in in 2004 has proven to be anything but, though we are much luckier in our relationships with our PCT than many.

I have seen many changes in the last 10 years, some of which have happened to me and some of which I have been instrumental in.

The gradual adoption of our computer system's facilities has been a very significant change, one which I initially led. We now have a website as well, where patients can pre-book appointments and request repeat prescritions.

The new contract in 2004 was an eye-opener. Initially I can confidently say it improved matters in Primary Care. However, as is the nature of these things, the consequences (intended or otherwise) are playing havoc with General Practice, not helped by a predatory and antagonistic Government who seem to feel the need to grind us into submission when all we want to do is do our job. This despite our patients constantly supporting us in whichever survey you care to mention.

I have also been an active member of the East Sussex Local Medical Committee since 2000. I suppose this makes me a politician. I try my best to contribute in a meaningful way, though it is for others to say if I am successful. Whether any of those others read this blog, though, I have no idea. I can't see the pointing in whinging about things if you're not prepared to do somethig about it. So I try to.

I've also changed in the last decade. My experience base has grown. My practice has, too. I've been divorced, remarried and made a father again. I swear (a bit) less, laugh as much as I ever did (quite a bit) and I think I am both more considered by more adamant in my viewpoint and espousals. I guess I've grown up some more.

Anyway, I'm starting to ramble.

I will try and post more frequently...

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