In a surprise move the health secretary Jeremy Hunt has announced that GPs will have to look after sick people.
‘We need to refresh the NHS mandate and improve patient care,’ he explains, ‘and as part of that I’m asking doctors to care for people who are ill. The proposals would mean that your doctor will have to keep you alive for as long as possible without killing you as well as doing a few other bits and pieces.’
The move comes after the government found out that for far too long GPs must have been doing other things with their time. ‘It’s not quite clear what those other things are but they might include painting and decorating, rewiring the house and writing poetry.’
‘It’s time to get back to basics,’ says the health secretary, ‘we need our doctors to chat to ill people, find out what’s wrong with them and then do something about it. Our proposal will revolutionise the NHS, I cant believe that no-one has suggested that doctors do this before.’
An Essex-based GP said: ‘On first hearing this I thought it was yet another eye rolling proposal but when you get into the detail I realised that it’s what we’ve been doing all along. During the day I speak to lots of ill people and prescribe them things to make them feel better, that’s what a doctor does, even my three year old understands that. Try explaining to a three year old what a politician does. I’ve tried, it’s impossible!’
When asked if he knew anything at all about the day-to-day work of a GP the health secretary replied: ‘GP? Hang on I know this one….’
His latest plans include asking the fire brigade to put out fires and giving policemen the unenviable task of arresting naughty people.
Dr Kevin Hinkley is a GP in Aberdeen.