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At the heart of general practice since 1960

8. Dr Zoe Norris

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The Hull GP has become a strong national voice for general practice. Starting off as a blogger and Pulse columnist, Dr Norris has quickly risen up the ranks to front the pressure group GP Survival and is now GPC lead for sessional GPs. She is part of a rising group of younger GP leaders, exasperated by the old guard’s ‘softly softly’ style of medicopolitics and embracing a more militant stance.

Dr Norris was a key figure in the backlash against the so-called ‘new deal’ for general practice last year, and her interventions over the GP Forward View also changed the terms of the debate, decrying the ‘hoops’ GPs had to jump through to get extra investment.

Dr Norris was one of the strongest voices calling for a vote on industrial action at the LMCs Conference. Many GPs said she voices their own concerns and encourages them to fight for their future. One said: ‘Her blogs are a uniting force and make us cry – or weep with relief that we are not alone.’

But translating her passion into action in the notoriously sclerotic corridors of BMA House will need all Dr Norris’s considerable energy.

She tells Pulse ‘I want to make sure the message of hardworking GPs gets across. But a lot of us are naive about how the NHS is viewed and what makes big decisions happen above our heads.’ Let’s hope Dr Norris fulfils her huge potential in the year ahead.

Why influential: Rallying voice for a disillusioned profession

Surprising fact: Misdiagnosed her own appendicitis as muscular pain. ‘Deep Heat isn’t that good for peritonitis…Oops!’  

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