Viewpoint: Contracts change but the soul of general practice remains as strong as ever

Anyone who has young children at home, or is simply young at heart, will feel the excitement rising as Christmas approaches.

Dr Cook: 'This year Santa’s contract has changed.'
Dr Cook: 'This year Santa’s contract has changed.'

With this excitement seems to come a time of increased activity - school plays, parties, church congregations swell, flu clinics are running, A+E becomes busier and requests to Santa (or the GP) hit an all time high.

This year Santa’s contract has changed. No longer will he have to ask all children if they have been behaving themselves, or taking their medication, but he will have to ensure that all presents are delivered on time, by a named elf, who could be visiting from any part of the world. There are no boundaries too large to cross.

In preparation for this, Santa will be available to receive requests for gifts not just in the six weeks leading up to Christmas, but all year round as well. If your request is not acted on in a timely manner, rest assured the reindeers will be monitoring this and will report it to someone - the Eskimo Regulatory Body until April next year, but this may well be absorbed by the new chief inspector of Christmas who will be reporting to the CQC.

If you need an emergency delivery of gifts, please avoid attending the warehouse directly as queues at this time of year can be very large. It is best to contact your local delivery depot, or even ask a friendly neighbour to do this on your behalf.

If you call 111, it may be able to help, and in fact will very likely send out the flying Santa squad, resulting in a long and ultimately unproductive visit to the warehouse.

Meanwhile, back in the real world, life goes on as normal. Kids receive gifts, patients are seen and practices continue to function. The Lord (Hunt) giveth, and the Lord taketh away. What he can’t take away is the soul of general practice. That remains and is as strong as ever.

Happy Christmas.

* Dr Cook is a GP in Hurstpierpoint, West Sussex.

Have you registered with us yet?

Register now to enjoy more articles and free email bulletins

Register

Already registered?

Sign in

Follow Us:

Just published

GP practices face losses 'in excess of £50,000' as COVID-19 hits income

GP practices face losses 'in excess of £50,000' as COVID-19 hits income

GP practices across England are facing a significant loss of income as COVID-19 dries...

MPs explore GP workload cap and flag damaging impact of intense pressure

MPs explore GP workload cap and flag damaging impact of intense pressure

MPs have raised the prospect of a cap on GP consultations in an investigation into...

GP training: Working remotely as a GP trainee during the pandemic

GP training: Working remotely as a GP trainee during the pandemic

Dr Zoe Brown was in her first year of GP training and pregnant as lockdown began....

GPs warn government off PCN-led test and trace system

GPs warn government off PCN-led test and trace system

GPs have rebuffed suggestions that primary care networks (PCNs) are ‘best placed’...

Map: Three-fold variation in GP practice list size between CCGs

Map: Three-fold variation in GP practice list size between CCGs

The list size of GP practices across England has grown rapidly over the past decade...

Advance decisions to refuse treatment - what GPs need to know

Advance decisions to refuse treatment - what GPs need to know

A recent case has underlined the need for GPs to communicate a patient’s known wishes...