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At the heart of general practice since 1960

Dr Peter Stott

... on aliens, insomnia and pink bubbles

The best thing about my practice is feeling part of something bigger than myself that allows me to contribute to other people's lives.

The worst thing about my practice is feeling part of something so much bigger than myself that I can no longer contribute meaningfully to it.

The person that influenced me most is Tom Main, the psychoanalyst who helped me understand, trust and use the feelings others induce in me.

Being involved in NHS management has taught me to say less, listen more, compromise and be a gentle leader.

My favourite fictional doctor is without doubt, Dr Who. The experiences, the time travel, the sonic screwdriver, all those beautiful female companions! And the aliens make it so like general practice...

Having my life planned weeks ahead is the most annoying thing about being a GP. I need the stability of general practice, but I also thrive on change and the unexpected.

The trait I most dislike in myself is being unable to say no. It has got me into a lot of trouble over the years and is possibly why I am writing this.

The trait I most dislike in others is the inability to compromise.

In the future GPSIs will be intermediaries between primary and secondary care, not just assistants to specialists.

My funniest moment as a GP was falling into a water butt while standing on it trying to retrieve keys from a gutter on a night home visit in the rain.

An interesting thing people don't know about osteoporosis is it runs in families so GPs are best placed to prevent it.

Remaining a GP while managing EDICS provides my practice manager with more than a few problems. It is also difficult on my patients.

Anything keeps me awake at night. I usually only sleep four to five hours – and thinking of the most minor thing can interrupt even that.

The book I'm reading at the moment is Sun Tzu's The Art of War. It's an old Chinese book but greatly relevant to the NHS.

The vehicles I own are a beautiful BMW sports coupe with a dent in the bonnet (a metaphor for life – some people see only the dent), a Cessna Cutlass (that's a light plane), a jet ski and a ride-on lawnmower.

My favourite word is robust (actually it's the one I hate the most – but I love teasing NHS managers with it).

My guiltiest pleasure is I never feel guilty about pleasure.

My most vivid schooldays memory is putting potassium permanganate and soap flakes in the school fountain. Lovely pink bubbles.


• GP in Tadworth, Surrey

• Member of the National Osteoporosis Society

• Medical director of Epsom Downs Integrated Care Service (EDICS)

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