What it's really like at the coalface

BMJ 2003; 327 doi: (Published 03 July 2003) Cite this as: BMJ 2003;327:59
  1. Julian Stokes, general practitioner (
  1. Leominster

    What's wrong with the NHS? I know this will sound a little like a school homework exercise, but perhaps if we all sat down and wrote down our wishes then the changes that doctors want might move higher up the political agenda. Here are my thoughts and wishes as I leave the NHS. If you would like to mark them out of 10 and let me know then please do so.

    I qualified in 1974 and have worked in the NHS since then. I am a GP principal working in Leominster, Herefordshire—a market town set in lovely countryside. I have been here for the past 20 years. I am in a partnership with five others, all very reasonable people. We are based in premises that were converted for the purpose, and we manage a dispensing branch surgery. Leominster has a local community hospital for which we cover inpatient care. I have just offered my resignation from practice, which will be effective this summer, when I …

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