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Wednesday 24 Sep 2014

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Junior Doctors – Your Life In Their Hands: episode synopses

Young Doctors – Your Life In Their Hands

Episode one

What if your first day on the job was a matter of life and death? Across the next six weeks, BBC Three follows the lives of seven newly-qualified junior doctors as they leave behind five years of medical study, move in together and put their first-day nerves aside to take up their jobs as junior doctors at the Royal Victoria Infirmary and The General, Newcastle.

Among the new recruits are Adam, Katherine and Lucy, who are in their first foundation year of being qualified, and Jon, Suzi, Keir and Andy, who are in their second foundation year.

Suzi is about to start her first shift under the watchful eye of A&E veteran Dr Bas Sen and finds herself thrown in at the deep-end with a cardiac arrest. Things are no better on the night shift as she juggles Friday-night binge drinkers and suicide attempts.

Katherine's first day nerves aren't helped when she learns that she is the only junior doctor on the Plastics ward. Thankfully, Keir comes to her rescue when the workload starts to pile up. On the Respiratory ward, the frustration of losing his pen provides Adam with the only chance to practice his surgical skills and viewers see Andy join his rotation in Paediatrics.

Over in Gastroenterology, many of Lucy's patients can be agitated and aggressive, making her first day on the job even harder, whilst every moment of Jon's time is accounted for – if he isn’t running to an emergency as part of the hospital's crash team he's playing rugby or practicing with his band for their next gig.

From first diagnosis to treatment and recovery, the junior doctors all face the same struggles and rely heavily on the nursing staff, medical peers and each other to get them from shift to shift.

Junior Doctors – Your Life In Their Hands

Episode two

BBC Three continues to follow the lives of seven newly-qualified junior doctors as they leave behind five years of medical study and take up their jobs as junior doctors at the Royal Victoria Infirmary and The General, Newcastle.

It's a typical night in A&E as binge drinking, bad behaviour and brawling are becoming the norm for Suzi. Five 12-hour shifts on the trot are taking their toll and she turns to her parents for some moral support.

Somewhere in the hospital there is a patient with heart failure and it's a race against time for Jon, who is on call as part of the crash team. Prioritising patients is key as up to 80 emergency assessment cases are admitted during each shift. As another long day on shift comes to an end, Jon comes across a patient who has collapsed in the corridor.

Across in Gastroenterology, Lucy has patients with life-threatening chronic illnesses and others suffering from conditions associated with alcohol and drug abuse – some of whom are her own age. She comes face to face with the harsh reality that for some patients there just is no cure.

In Respiratory, meanwhile, Adam begins to realise that medicine has its limitations. Katherine, who is on call across several wards, begins to feel the pressure of the job.

On a well-deserved night off, all of the junior doctors are facing up to the limits of what they can do as doctors when they reveal which superhero power they would like to have to help make people better.

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