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At the heart of general practice since 1960

The Dolly Parton defence does not apply

‘Fantasy move? Leading the England cricket selectors!'

What made you decide to go into general practice?

A gynaecologist called Willy Porter, who

made me think through what would really matter to me

in practising medicine as a career.

What would you have done if you hadn't been a doctor?

I can't

recall ever considering an alternative career before going to university. Now that I've been around long enough to realise it's a fantasy for most of us, I'd go for off-piste ski-guiding in the winter combined with writing in the summer.

Who's your career role model/ guru?

Academic general practice is a small world but with some outstanding individuals, and I've learnt much about how to be effective from observing them. I worked for some time as a clinical assistant with a colorectal surgeon, Brendan Devlin, and he was the person who awakened my interest in GI research.

What's your career high point so far?

The great thing about my job is that you're constantly striving for the next ‘high' and it's hard to pick out any single one.

And the low point?

The lows have to come from my clinical work and the profoundly sad events that you sometimes have to deal with, all part of general practice.

Anything interesting on your surgery wall?

Two photographs that remind me of very special friendships, one taken on a trip to the Bayou, the other a wonderfully tranquil, almost abstract, picture of water running over stones.

What leisure interests would you put in your Who's Who entry?

Art and books, anything to do with mountains, sailing and my ‘ruin' in Mallorca.

What's your fantasy career move?

Chair of selectors for the England cricket team.

Greg Rubin is professor of primary care at the University of Sunderland, centre of primary and community care, and a GP with a special interest in gastroenterology

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