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Obedience and fear to be at the heart of the medical school curriculum

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Medical schools used to be places where you’d slowly dissect a cadaver, learn about diseases and find out which way round your stethoscope goes in your ears. You’d meet up in the pub with your friends and have a laugh and share heroic medical stories on the way home, but Professor Candid has other ideas.

The new curriculum will isolate and indoctrinate

‘The thought of junior doctors going on strike makes us want to wet our pants,’ explains Prof, ‘and by “us” I mean the political elite. So I was tasked to revisit the medical school curriculum to nip this in the bud.’

Professor Candid’s plan is to introduce ‘fear’, ‘obedience’ and ‘resilience’ modules into an already packed curriculum.

‘The new curriculum will isolate and indoctrinate,’ explains Prof, ‘med students will spend their tender young lives reflecting, ticking boxes and worrying about references rather than getting on with the serious business of learning and having a bit of fun. They’ll be so bogged down in paperwork and so worried about getting an FY1 post within a hundred miles of their flat that they won’t have time to think, let alone go to the pub. And to crown it all they’ll be engaged in an endless cycle of legitimised peer review which used to be called grassing-up.’

‘The state pays for their education,’ continues Prof, ‘so they had jolly well better man-up, tow the line and start doing what the state tells them. If, God forbid, you should ever take the politics out of the health service you’ll end up with a confident profession teeming with dedicated young men and women doing the best for their eternally grateful patients. And who on earth wants that?’

’You will obey,’ concludes Prof,  ’And you will be afraid. Now if it’s ok could I ask you to fill out one of my feedback forms, my appraisal’s due and I’ve been told I have to do at least ten of them.’

Dr Kevin Hinkley is a GP in Edinburgh

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Readers' comments (9)

  • worryingly accurate!

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  • ..and your point is,Kevin?
    If you want to join a monopolistic state run enterprise and be guarenteed a nice cheque at the end of each month, you might have to accept that you can't be precious about having to work on Saturday afternoons, like many people have to do.My son works for himself as a, "non-medical", free lance.If he doesn't get work, he doesn't eat.He does not have the luxury of being able to pontificate about " Equality Impact Assesments".
    About time the JDs grew up.

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  • ..and your point is,Kevin?
    If you want to join a monopolistic state run enterprise and be guarenteed a nice cheque at the end of each month, you might have to accept that you can't be precious about having to work on Saturday afternoons, like many people have to do.My son works for himself as a, "non-medical", free lance.If he doesn't get work, he doesn't eat.He does not have the luxury of being able to pontificate about " Equality Impact Assesments".
    About time the JDs grew up.

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  • I dont think he even mentioned anything about working on saturdays? are you reading the same article??

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  • There's an important omission: teaching medical students that it is up to them to pay for their own policing. Indeed, the time will soon come where doctors will pay to work in the NHS, so grateful will they be.

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  • you have all hit on the key point - medical school is the entry point into a medical career - obviously !

    so if you want to define the future of healthcare you need to be selective on the medical students you recruit and what you want them to learn.

    if you want a truly vocational, supine, submissive and obedient workforce then you need to target the medical school candidates. they need to know when they enter into medical school that they are expected to take on financial debt and not to expect a high salary, not to expect to have a family and to be available 24/7. admitting bright, ambitious, competitive, high achievers is counter productive. the key for the state's vision of health provision is dependent on the right medical students being admitted.

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  • Er Robin you know doctors already work on saturdays?
    Junior doctor weekend working is not optional 'overtime' it is a non negotiable major part of their rotas.
    What they don't want is a major pay cut for this work. If you get a pay cut you get to eat less.

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  • British medical school education is bullshit.

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  • What do you mean ? British medical school is bullshit ? Please explain ?

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