GPs star in behind-the-scenes TV documentary

A GP taking part in a TV documentary about life in his London surgery hopes the show will generate 'positive PR' for general practice.

Dr Chrisanthan Ferdinand, who stars in the programme, says he hopes it will cast general practice in a positive light (photo: Channel 5/Knickerbockerglory Ltd)
Dr Chrisanthan Ferdinand, who stars in the programme, says he hopes it will cast general practice in a positive light (photo: Channel 5/Knickerbockerglory Ltd)

St John’s Medical Centre in Lewisham, south-east London, features in a four-part TV documentary starting on Tuesday evening that aims to give an insider’s view of what happens once the consultation room door is closed.

Read GP reactions to the first episode of the documentary

The Channel 5 programme, ‘GPs: Behind Closed Doors’, filmed the practice’s six doctors and two healthcare practitioners treating some of the 1,400 patients seen at the surgery each week.

Documentary makers rigged cameras in the doctor’s rooms earlier this year to capture life in the surgery.

They have picked out the most entertaining and interesting patients who capture the wide variety in GP workload, both in terms of patients and conditions.

Candid interviews

The series also highlights the strains and pressures of working on the frontline of the NHS, with candid and open interviews.

Dr Chrisanthan Ferdinand, a GP at the practice, hoped it would have a positive effect for GPs.

He said: ‘Our main reasons for doing the show were to generate some positive PR for general practice.  In some way we hope it will contribute to the patient-facing aspects of the RCGP Put Patients First Campaign in trying to secure more funding from the NHS budget.’

The first episode airs at 9pm Tuesday 29 April on Channel 5.

Dr Ferdinand added: 'I have seen it and it illustrates the variety and types of cases we see but doesn't truly reflect the hard work/hours we put in - I think it's hard to do this and keep it entertaining!'

Dr Ferdinand is also shortlisted in the 2014 GP Enterprise Awards.

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