During one of the lunch-time practice meetings there had been a consensus among the GP’s that many people coming to the practice were overweight. This had been brought on by the increase in patients requesting diet pills or surgical interventions such as gastric bands. Among them they concluded that imbalanced nutrition must be a problem in that area, that is individuals were probably eating more than body requirements due socioeconomic factors, which mean they have to go for cheaper processed foods. Secondly due to the decrease in employment in the area, there was a higher chance of social isolation related to having inadequate resources and loss of personal resources. Care-giver role strain related to being a single parent is the third for this community. These factors put together probably led to higher incidence of depressive illnesses and lack of interest thus individuals were more likely to neglect themselves and not engage in exercise programmes and other well-being activities. They therefore resolved to draw up a plan that would get the targeted individuals and ultimately the community and encourage participation in exercise programmes and better nutrition habits. This would then potentially improve the public health in the area overtime.
During the meeting even though I was not actively involved I found myself having many mixed feelings towards the proceedings. Initially I felt that this was one of the progressive aspects of the NHS and it was admirable that health care professionals were taking so much interest not only in pathophysiology of illness but also in social well-being of their patients. I felt proud that I could be, one day, entering a field that was becoming more holistic in the care of the patient and promoting the existence of a generally healthy population. However on the other hand I had feelings of anger at the fact that people had these expectations of practitioners without themselves making an effort at maintaining their health. From my perspective the fact that they came looking for diet pills and surgery meant they realised there was a problem but instead of putting the work in themselves they expected the practitioner to give them a “quick fix”.
During the meeting I had become so preoccupied with my own personal feelings that I lost my objectivity. I realised that I have to work on that weakness as it is imperative to delivering a good standard of care to the patient. I have to learn as an individual no to put personal opinions at the forefront of any of my decision making processes. However after some more consideration I realised that if considered appropriately personal…