Views & Reviews

Doctor in the house

BMJ 2013; 346 doi: (Published 20 March 2013) Cite this as: BMJ 2013;346:f1809
  1. Des Spence, general practitioner, Glasgow
  1. destwo{at}

Like many doctors of a certain generation, I’ve made many thousands of house calls. I’ve been barked at by poodles, rottweilers, pit bulls, and chihuahuas. Taken lifts full of graffiti, vomit, urine, and Buckie wine bottles. Walked up blacked out stairwells using the torch of my auriscope to guide me, with the crunch of used syringes under foot. Met countless fresh faced police officers and seen death in every manifestation. And announced death to screams, cries, sobs, and hysterical laughter. Detained patients under the Mental Health Act at 3 am. Stood on blood, …

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