What influenced your decision to work in General Practice?
It wasn’t my first career choice, I was a plastic surgeon before I did general practice. I was a registrar and was moving around the country with my husband. So, it mainly came down to family reasons why I eventually chose general practice but also, things in the hospital were getting somewhat repetitive and I didn’t particularly like the way autonomy was taken away from consultants and the way we were working. General practice and the ability to own your own business and work the way you wanted to and operate in your own surgery building was a great balance for me, so after I had my son I moved to GP training and I haven’t looked back since.
How did you find the training in Somerset?
It was fantastic. I had originally applied to Bristol because I grew up around there but was given Somerset, it wasn’t my first choice – I hadn’t even really been here, but now I am so glad this was the case, I love it here. There was a real comradery associated with it, I felt supported and a part of the team.
How would you describe the community around you?
The community in Bridgwater is hugely diverse, we have a farming community out in the villages, there are very affluent areas but we do serve a fairly deprived population. We have had a lot of immigration over the years so there is a lot of health education and it’s nice to have that challenge. There is a deep sense of community here in Bridgwater and we frequently look after extended families who have stayed locally. This allows wonderful continuity to the relationships with patients, which brings the greatest enjoyment. It is generally a very warm and friendly community here.
Could you try and describe general practice in three words?
Diverse, rewarding, autonomous.