Stressed-out GPs are given basic weapons training and bayonets, then invited to unleash a concerto of uber-violence in the ultimate practice away-day, as imagined by Pulse’s surreal blog ‘Through the K hole’
General practice is a small boat caught in a big storm. Austerity measures, harsh economic realities, increasing patients’ expectations and society’s seemingly-unquenchable thirst for medicine have mixed together to create a very toxic brew. Practitioners are often finding themselves overwhelmed with stress.
Recognising the damaging impact that this may have on the country’s GPs, Ronald Fordyce, the station commander at RAF Mossielouth, spoke out.
‘I realised that my own GP was feeling the strain when I saw him nervously picking at the threads of his tie whilst trying to explain the results of my sperm count,’ he said.
‘I strongly believe that all GPs should be given the opportunity to vent some of their pent-up anger and frustrations in a controlled, safe environment. That’s why I’ve decided to open up our military training base as part of a new jointly funded venture to provide alternative GP away-days.’
One of the course instructors, speaking anonymously from behind a bush just north of Moray, said: ‘In the morning the GPs register, they collect a greetings pack and are shown to their barracks. They then assemble in the main quadrant and are assigned a rank and number and are given a guided tour of the base.’
‘The day usually starts off with basic weapons training and is divided into various activities which are all designed to encourage the release of a career’s-worth of pent-up primary care rage”
‘This morning we gave one middle-aged GP a fixed bayonet and a straw man. We told her to imagine that he’d just knocked over his bottle of methadone and could he have another prescription please and whilst she was at it could he have a backdated sick note for the past twelve years. She went f***ing ballistic.’
‘We’ve also set up a realistic house call simulation. The scenario is a one hour emergency call to a patient at three in the morning with suspected bacterial meningitis. When the doctor arrives the patient, played by one of our well-trained actors, has a mild cough and his only regret is that his sore lungs have prevented him from smoking his recently purchased bag of high-quality super skank.’
‘During last night’s op the GP, camouflaged and tooled up to the eyeballs, reacted very badly to this particular OSCE station. To put it mildly he went absolutely f***ing nuts. I mean I served in Helmand Province and had two hellish tours in Iraq but believe you me this was a concerto of uber-violence the likes of which I have never seen nor care to see again. Before we had the chance to extract the peak flow out of our poor actor’s a*se he’d managed to blow 350 and I’m still getting flashbacks.’
‘In fact the GPs’ level of sadistic violence has been very impressive, so much so that we’re thinking of recruiting them into the armed forces. We just have to tell them that the enemy is still worried about brain cancer despite a negative MRI scan and they would turn into a gang of cut-throat mentalists.’
You just have to read some of the comments in the station’s guest book to realise that they are providing a much valued service.
‘Thank you captain, I have never felt so alive. It was certainly a practice away-day with a difference.’
‘My favourite part of the course was being allowed to scream “tag him and bag him” before emptying a full clip into a frequent flyer’s backside. I started the day mentally fragile but left feeling like a new woman.’
‘For me, running through the forest at midnight hunting down a heartsink like the animal that he is has made it all worthwhile. I’ll definitely be back next year.’
Discounts for group bookings are now available.
Written in response to Copperfield’s blog Lord Darzi’s a what now? Dr Kevin Hinkley is a GP in Aberdeen.
Click here for more from Through the K hole Through the K hole – credit HaPe Gera, Flickr