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At the heart of general practice since 1960

Why aren’t you marching with us?

An outstanding entry in Pulse’s 2016 writing competition by Dr Rachel Brettell: a plea to her senior colleagues 

Why aren’t you joining us out when we march?

Why don’t you care that our world’s falling apart?

Our integrity questioned, another character smear

Another newspaper doubting all we hold dear.

 

Please listen, we’re shouting, we’re up through the night

Trying our hardest to make you see right.

We’re tweeting, we’re posting, we’re out on the streets

(we’re not drinking Moet, not even for treats).

 

So why should you care, you’ve lots on your plate

There’s plenty more issues we need to debate,

Yes funding’s a problem, of course that’s the truth

But worse than that, exhaustion – no one can recruit.

 

Already we’re leaving in droves from these shores

Preferring banking, Australia or domestic chores.

Morale is rock bottom, it’s making us cry,

So why won’t you hear us before even locums run dry?

 

GP training is empty, and set to get worse

And all the while Jeremy still tightens his purse.

Pay premia are twaddle, no security provide,

Whilst the gender pay gap gets increasingly wide.

 

And thank you, dear Jezza, for restricting weekend work,

To just one in two, (at least my husband’s a jerk).

What childcare is open each night time at nine?

You’re taking the mickey defining what’s ‘social’ time.

 

We all work vast hours that our rota hides

But you’d even remove safeguards that monitoring provides.

Our pay is protected, but not for those due to start,

No we won’t sell out our colleagues, we have a heart.

 

We won’t let you peddle your lies and your spin,

Without standing up for what we believe in.

This isn’t just juniors, our contracts besieged,

But the future of healthcare if Malawana’s believed.

Other writing competition entries

(Winner) Dr Renee Hoenderkamp: 'I knew I was breaking every rule'

(2nd place) Dr Helen Cotton: My son’s call for help saved me

(3rd place) Dr Richard Cook: 'I tried to speak, but no words came out'

(Under-35s winner) Dr Heather Ryan: Sometimes you need to break rules to be kind

(Runner-Up) Dr Celine Inglis: Being a doctor puts you in a strange position for tragedy

The best of the other entries

So senior colleagues please stand behind us today,

We’ll strike so our patients won’t have to pay

Insurance premiums that have gone through the roof,

Don’t listen to Jeremy, we’re telling the truth.

 

And that’s why we’re fighting because we believe,

That if this goes through most doctors will leave.

Then those who are left - tired, broken, abused

(and still fed up over mortality data misused),

Won’t be able to keep our patients from harm.

And that’s when Mr Hunt, collected and calm,

Will tell us ‘it’s broken’, the crafty old tease,

‘It’s time to sell up to these private companies,

They’ll manage it better,’ who cares ‘bout the cost,

Or the fundamental principles that we’ve all lost,

‘Healthcare for all, what an age old decree

Thank god that’s over, more profit for me.’

So that’s why there’s fuss, and all the distress

Because, put quite simply, it’s our NHS.

 

Dr Rachel Brettell is a GP trainee in Abingdon

Other writing competition entries

(Winner) Dr Renee Hoenderkamp: 'I knew I was breaking every rule'  

(2nd place) Dr Helen Cotton: My son’s call for help saved me

(3rd place) Dr Richard Cook: 'I tried to speak, but no words came'

(Under-35s winner) Dr Heather Ryan: Sometimes you need to break rules to be kind

(Runner-Up) Dr Celine Inglis: ‘Being a doctor puts you in a strange position for tragedy’

The best of the other entries

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