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Independents' Day

Why I blog

Jobbing Doctor is a man of a certain age. I remember Co-op 99 tea, the farthing (just) and when the breadman came round in his van every day to our house.

Jobbing Doctor is a man of a certain age. I remember Co-op 99 tea, the farthing (just) and when the breadman came round in his van every day to our house.

As I am approaching the sunlit end of my career, one of things I am acutely aware of is what has disappeared in the world that I inhabit.

In the same way that things disappear, then new things come along to replace them, and confuse me all the more.

I try to keep up to date with things, but I am a little slow on the uptake: SatNav is only a system that I have recently used (I always preferred to read maps) and mastering the Satellite TV remote control is something I have had to learn from my children.

The same has happened with electronic media, and I have only recently realised the value of such tools as video-conferencing and blogging.

Blogging only started for me in 2008, when I decided to do it as a kind of online reflective diary. That phase did not last long, as there was so much to comment and post on, and now the Jobbing Doctor is completely part of my life.

What do we bloggers blog about? There are hundreds of subjects to comment on. I suppose one of the most common threads is how we interact with an overmighty Government, and all the problems of dealing with people high up in the system who don't have a clue about the consequences of the changes and regulations that they introduce.

The antics of ‘Sir' Liam Donaldson and his ilk take quite a lot of my time. I blog about home, and my passions for various pastimes.

The blog however is called ‘The Jobbing Doctor', and it is as a Jobbing Doctor that I blog.The wonderful thing about working in general practice is that it can encompass every single specialty, and every illness. We often spend our time listening to people's stories about their journey through the system of healthcare, sometimes being part of it, and sometimes being an informed bystander.

The power of their stories can be deeply moving, and their experience forms part of the subject of many posts that I write. I don't think that my patients would immediately recognise themselves in posts that I write, as I am aware that I need to keep their trust and not abuse their confidentiality. Thus I will change some details in the story (change in age, gender and minor details) in order the protect them from this, and yet I hope I am able to take their experience and the message that they give me and use it to illustrate the point I am trying to make.

I hope that I have successfully achieved this.

There is another potential problem on the horizon, and that is the new process of Twitter. The great thing about Twitter is that it is immediate and personal. The younger users have embraced it fully, and it is an internet phenomenon. One of my partners has a son who has just finished Freshers' week, and his antics are expressed in frequent and quite revealing posts. It is what they do.

Doctors are being advised, however, not to twitter as it might compromise confidentiality. A study has shown that a significant number of blogs and twitters (micro-blogs) are violating that confidentiality.

Jobbing Doctor agrees that we have to be careful, and I am careful. I always ask myself what the patient would think if they read the post.

Others should as well. Don't be the twit who twitters.

Jobbing Doctor Jobbing Doctor

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