Doc: Congratulations, All, on qualifying as G.Ps.
You know the knee bone’s connected to the hip bone and all that jazz.
I’m what you might call the touchy-feely end of training.
So we’re going to dive straight in with some role play and you’ll get the gist.
You, sir, what’s your name?
Giles: Giles, Doctor.
Doc: Top notch, Giles. You’re the doc, I’m the patient.
Doc: Knock, knock.
Giles: Please come in. Nice to see you. Take a seat.
Doc: Bingo! That’s like a red rag to a bull to these people.
Give them less encouragement. They need to know who’s boss.
Make them knock again, as if you didn’t hear them first time. Mumble permission to enter. Be distracted when they do.
They should feel uneasy, a little unsure, faintly queasy. They should be bubbling under with panic about presenting a convincing case without stuttering.
O.K, Giles. Crack on.
Giles: How can I help you today?
That’s writing them a blank cheque to park their behind in front of you for 20 minutes.
Be time-challenged, interrupted, vaguely annoyed. Think Jeremy Paxman being sold a time-share- sneery, dubious: What seems to be the trouble?
Giles: Well doctor, I’m depressed and I’m getting these migraines…
Doc: Migraines? How do we know they’re migraines? Who’s the G.P in this rat-hole? Who took the bastard exams?
Good to hear about the depression, though. That’s easy-peasy. Start scribbling the Prozac prescription straight away and say something earnest like, I prefer to make the diagnoses, if you don’t mind. Are these headaches really that bad?
Giles: Yes, doctor, they’re terrible…
Doc: Ya-di-ya-di-ya… Do you know this person? Are they a relative? Do you know their history with ‘the truth’?
Or is it just possible they’re laying it on thick for the nice doctor?
Giles: Umm, what if they’re really in pain?
Doc: Oh, they’ll be back, Sonny. More rambling tales about how much worse it is etcetera etcetra.
But by then you’re in anti-biotic land, my boy. Home and Away.
Giles: So what do you give them on this visit?
Doc: Something to think about, young Giles, that’s what. This is how you finish:
Look, people of your age/race/persuasion tend to get a lot of this sort of thing and it goes away in a jiffy with the right attitude and one of these happy chappies with water every day. Now, let’s make some room for those genuinely in need, shall we?
Giles: And don’t forget to shut the door on your way out.
Doc: By God, he’s got it!
Take an illegible note of that, the rest of you fellows.