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Battered and bruised, but the words hurt as much

In 16 years at my practice, I have been physically assaulted twice, once causing severe bruising. I have been threatened with violence on three or four other occasions.

I have been sworn at and otherwise verbally abused on too many occasions to recall.I have always regarded it as part of the job especially if, like us, you keep the door open for the alcoholics, mentally ill, drug users and so forth (although by no means were all incidents from such patients).

It gets me down, though, when press and politicians moan about GPs, saying we are lazy, overpaid and generally useless.

An occasional 'thanks' from our masters would not go amiss.

From Dr Matthew Johnson, central London

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