I went to a comprehensive/state school in Hereford and then a 6th form college to do my A levels-I did Biology Chemistry and Physics.
I went straight to university in London after this and trained at the Royal Free Hospital School of Medicine in Hampstead
12 O levels (like GSCEs) and 3 A levels
Degree in medicine -MB BS
Post graduate qualifications in paediatrics (children’s medicine) , general practice, family planning and dermatology (skin diseases)
I did 5 years of hospital medicine in London (and one year in USA); I then did 16 months training to be a GP in London before we then moved up to Nottingham when I was a fully qualified GP. I’ve been a partner at the University of Nottingham Health Service for 20 years
GP Partner-University off Nottingham Health Service
The health centre is on the university campus. We share our building with a dental surgery too.
I live with my family (husband and daughters) a dog and a cat. We live in Nottingham. I’m a general Practitioner (a GP or family doctor) and I work 3 days per week. I love dog walking (luckily for the dog!), reading, yoga, running and singing (but only in church where no-one else can hear me…).
My husband and I are both doctors-we met at medical school. I don’t think any of our daughters are interested in studying medicine but I like to think we haven’t put them off-they just prefer other (non-science) things. Hopefully I might inspire some other children instead hence why I’m on this chat.
I love cooking and entertaining my friends-making all types of curries is my favourite and I have quite a few recipe books-in fact probably too many.
I was never that sporty at school but now I run, ski, do yoga and last summer started playing tennis. I’ve run a few half marathons but normally it’s just a Park Run (the 5km run on a Saturday morning).
I love reading too and usually have a few books on the go at once.
Our dog is called Delilah-she’s a black labrador and she is very adored.
Mimi is our cat-she was a stray and moved in with us a few years ago-she likes sleeping on all the beds and leaving her fur everywhere. But we love her!
My pronouns are
I work in a large University health centre-it’s like a normal GP practice but it’s quite big-lots of patients-and mainly students and staff that study or work at the University of Nottingham. That means most of our patients are quite young.
When people are ill or want to know about some aspect of their health then the GP surgery is normally the first place they would go. There they could expect to see a doctor or a nurse who can help them with their problem. At our health centre we also have other specialised staff eg occupational therapists, pharmacists, physiotherapists and health care assistants. Some of these people are taking part in this outreach if you want to find out more about other roles.
As a female GP I would normally see quite a lot of patients with female type problems (eg period problems or pregnancy related issues) but I have also done extra training in skin diseases (dermatology) and so I see a lot of patients with rashes too. GPs also look after a lot of patients with mental health problems eg anxiety or low mood. And then there’s everything else too-headaches (or ache anywhere), asthma, diabetes, sports injuries-literally hundreds of different things so every day is different.
GP surgeries are not just about ill people -we also try and help people stay well-so we also offer immunisations (injections against disease-like covid), tests to detect early cancer (we call this screening) and healthy patient checks too.
Its a really busy practice and we really rely on our practice manager, secretaries, receptionists and lots of other vital people too to help it all to run smoothly. We receive hundreds of phone calls and emails a day and it is this team of people who make sure patients see the right person for their problems, type letters and make sure all the staff are paid!
My Typical Day:
I wake up at 06:30 and read the newspaper online and do a puzzle called Wordle (try it if you haven’t!). Then between 7-8 I get ready for work and then take my daughter to school. I get to work about 08:30. I see patients between 9 and 1 and again between 2 and 6. It looks like there is an hour for lunch -and sometimes there is-but often there are meetings or catching up with paperwork.
I go home between 6 and 7pm
I get to work about 08:30 and have 30 minutes before I call any first patient. I use this time to check any blood or X Ray results that have come in over night. I will also sign any prescriptions that are waiting (prescriptions are like messages to a pharmacist stating what medicine I want the patient to have). If there’s time I’ll also have a quick look at my list for the morning-there are 14 patients to see (or telephone depending on what they have asked for ). At the end of that it’s about 12:30 if I’ve run on time (rare!) and there might be extra patients to see too -those who have phoned up during the morning and need to see or speak to a GP that day. After all the patients are seen there are then letters that I might need to write to specialists (called referrals), or tests to arrange for patients eg they might need a scan of their knee if they have had an injury, blood tests or Xrays. There may also be reports to write eg patients need their GP to write a report if they want to study abroad for a year, own a shotgun or apply for life insurance.
This might take most of lunchtime too. But usually there is at least 20-30 minutes to grab lunch with my colleagues in the staff room and if I’m very efficient I might even have time for quick run around the lovely university campus. We usually have a lunchtime meeting with lots of the other staff once a week where we discuss all sorts of things-eg new guidance, updates from the rest if the clinical or admin team, patients with complex needs or children who we are worried about from a safeguarding point of view (children who maybe at risk of harm).
Occasionally at lunchtime GPs need to visit a patient in their own home because they are too ill or frail to come to the practice. (A GP practice is sometimes also called a GP surgery -but we don’t operate on people other than fairly straightforward things like injecting joints or removing small skin lumps.)
The afternoon is pretty much the same as the morning-another 14 patients-paperwork and referrals afterwards-then normally finish about 6-sometimes nearer 7-then home.
Quick Fire Questions
How would you describe yourself in 3 words?
Who is your favourite singer or band?
What's your favourite food?
Curry of course
What is the most fun thing you've done?
Stayed in The Ice Hotel in Northern Sweden (it’s literally made of ice) and slept on a bed of ice at minus 5C. And the husky ride was fun too
What did you want to be after you left school?
I wanted to be a doctor from about 14 years old.
Were you ever in trouble at school?
No not really!! Other than was always told off for talking-I always talked to my friends too much in my lessons.
What's the best thing you've done in your career?
I worked in America for a year and did anaesthetics in Boston Massachusetts. It was fun working in another country and they loved my English accent!
What or who inspired you to do your job?
I watched a TV programme when I was 14-it was all about emergency medicine/saving lives and I thought it looked really exciting
If you weren't in healthcare, what job would you do?
I’d probably be a lawyer but I think I definitely made the best choice.
If you had 3 wishes for yourself what would they be? - be honest!
Keep healthy, keep happy, stay married!
Tell us a joke.
A horse walks into a bar.
Barman says-Why the long face?
sorry-that’s my favourite