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Thanks Jeremy Hunt – you’ve done a huge amount for me this year

Dear Jeremy,

Can I call you Jezza? I can’t stay quiet any longer. You’ve had a bit of stick from my colleagues recently, and I want to say sorry. For some reason you’ve quite got their hackles up. Sure, you appear to have a wanton disregard for the welfare of highly trained professionals, patient safety and, in fact the very existence of the NHS, but it’s not as if you massively spun slightly questionable statistical papers for your own agenda is it?

My CV looks bloomin’ brilliant now

Frankly all this negative press seems a bit harsh to me. I mean it’s not all your fault is it? There’s that friend of yours, Dave, who seems to be really in charge (although no one actually admits to voting for him). And if you know someone who owns a company keen to earn some bucks from healthcare, then why not let them run a GP surgery or a hospital? For you it means fewer staff, less paperwork, easy life: I get it. OK, so a few companies have realised that poorly people don’t make them money, and have ditched their contracts leaving patients stuffed , but it’s business. These things happen! I’m still #TeamJezza.

I’m not like my colleagues, Jezza, You’ve done a huge amount for me in the last year and I want to say ‘thank you’. Until you raised your NHS-targeted missile, I thought I was just a GP. Now I have realised that this simply isn’t the case. I am so much more.

In the last year as well as being a highly trained, and experienced, ‘Consultant in Community and Family Medicine’, I have developed a number of additional skills, for which you are almost entirely responsible.

I have learned how to create a website, how to harness social media to create a movement of thousands of likeminded people. I have created content that has gone ‘viral’, I can write a mean press release, I’ve discovered a previously suppressed love for writing. On top of that, I have learned about corporate law, how to create a social enterprise, and more about the NHS than I ever thought possible. I have made a wealth of similarly driven contacts.

I have even been headhunted for lucrative non-medical jobs, because, let’s be honest, Jezza, we doctors can often be bloody good at anything we put our mind to.

And the reason I want to thank you Jeremy is that, when your eventual goal is made clear, and the NHS folds, like many of my colleagues my CV looks bloomin’ brilliant now. In the end, I think we will all be OK (although our patients certainly won’t).

So thanks Jezza. Perhaps next I’ll try my hand at being a spin-doctor.

Dr Susie Bayley is a GP in Derby and chair of GP Survival

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