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168 years service - how's that for continuity of care

It’s often cited as the great unquantifiable benefit of general practice, but how’s this for continuity of care?

By Steve Nowottny

It's often cited as the great unquantifiable benefit of general practice, but how's this for continuity of care?

Dr Chris Whitworth has been a GP in the Cornish village of St Agnes since 1993. But his forebears have worked in the village as the local family doctor since 1839 – providing cover for 168 of the past 170 years.

The dynasty apparently began with his great-great-grandfather, Dr Henry Whitworth, who worked in the village from 1839 to 1917, and also included a Dr William Whitworth (1880-1917), Dr Cuthbert Whitworth (1914-1951) and Dr Chris Whitworth's uncle, another Dr Henry Whitworth (1946-1991). The Daily Telegraph, one of a number of papers to report the story, has pictures of the lot.

For GPs, there's no doubt it's a feel-good story, and it'll be particularly pleasing to note the positive feedback from Daily Mail readers.

Dr Whitworth himself (Chris, that is), told us the wall-to-wall coverage had resulted in him getting ‘so much stick'' that, perhaps understandably, he wasn't keen to into the details for the umpteenth time.

After all, he and his family have to live in the village. And history would suggest they might be there for a few years to come.

Pulse team blog

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