I worked in Altnagelvin Hospital for four years as a junior doctor - part
work and part training. I then spent two years working in various hospitals,
training as a gynaecologist. But I reconsidered my choice and changed to
Science A-Levels, a university degree, then three years in hospital work
and one year in a general practice training job.
I’m in work for about 9am and see patients in my surgery until 11.
Then I have a tea-break and do paperwork until noon. I go out on home visits
until 1pm and then see patients in my surgery from 2-4pm and again from
4:30-5pm. I do paperwork until 6pm. Each year, I have to do twenty evenings
of shift-work from 6pm-12midnight and twelve nights from 12 midnight to
Fairly smart - shirt and tie.
The NHS arranges the annual income of the average GP to be about £60,000.
That’s about to change as a new contract is being negotiated. This
could see the average annual salary rise to about £80,000.
It’s emotionally rewarding. Rather than a hierarchical system, I
have no specific boss - so my partners are colleagues.
Confidence, approachable manner, patience and typing skills for the computer.
Good handwriting (yes, I know about our reputation, but unreadable notes
are no use to us!).
GPs are technically self-employed, so we make our own perks. You can create
your own flexible working hours.
I have had to learn some business skills - especially employment law. There
is much more to running a practice than knowing the medicine.
I love my job, but it took many years of training to get here. It is important
to enjoy all the steps along the way, as well as keeping an eye on the