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1

Why do you want to be a doctor?

• Keen interest in the human body and solving problems • Medicine is the perfect mix of social and science • I love that the science is always developing, I love to learn and know that medicine is a job in which I can continue to learn as the field is always changing • I possess many good qualities a doctor would need – hardworking, determined, and academic (as shown by my academic record) whilst also caring, empathetic, and a good communicator (as shown in my role as a young carer, and my time volunteering both for DSNE and the care home) • Medicine is hard with long hours and emotional demand, but I have the determination and mindset to manage it, for example 4 A-levels and an EPQ whilst being a young carer is challenging but I make sure to always take time for myself so that I am not overwhelmed • My sister has had a lot of involvement in the NHS, from a wide range of departments, and I remember being incredibly interested when she had her BAHA’s fitted • To learn more I have taken part in online work experience (BSMS), completed summer schools (Sunderland) and read books (this is going to hurt, your life in my hands) – all have just made me want to be a doctor more • Had place for work experience at Sunderland royal but got cancelled for COVID

2

What makes a good doctor?

• Good communication skills – listening!  My volunteering at a care home, talking to MPs, and volunteering at DSNE events shows the range of communication skills I possess – adapting  Communicating under pressure on the tall ships • Resilience  4 A-levels and an EPQ whilst being a young carer is challenging but I make sure to always take time for myself so that I am not overwhelmed • The ability to work as part of a team  Time on the tall ships, part of a 20-30 person crew sailing a ship across the north sea • Non-judgemental behaviour  Volunteering at DSNE and care home and young carer • Empathy and compassion  Volunteering at DSNE and care home and young carer • Adept at working under pressure  Tall ships  4 A-levels and an EPQ whilst being a young carer  Loosing sister in Florida • Critical thinking, adapting their knowledge to find solutions  A-levels, tall ships  Sister gets locked in the toilet when out, losing her on holiday in Florida • Patient centred approach  Care home, listening to the residents – they come first • Keen interest and love to learn  I have a keen interest in the human body and love to learn – as evidenced by my 4 A-levels and EPQ • You do it for the love of the job, because its not great pay at the start and not great hours

3

Which quality do you think is the most important in a doctor?

• Empathy and compassion o If you are empathetic for your patient you will put them at the centre of you job, you will try your hardest to get the best care for them, you will communicate well with them in order to help them, and not judge them in order to make them feel cared for – it encompasses the overall essence of a doctors social skills

4

What do you feel are the good and bad points about being a doctor?

Pros - Job satisfaction – making a difference to peoples lives Constant development of skills Constant learning Chance for research Being a part of something the UK is proud of – the NHS Working with others towards a common goal Wide variety of opportunities in specialities Cons - Stressful Long time to train Long shifts Night shift Being on call Difficult ethical decisions Lots of Uni debt

5

How would you balance your outside interests with studying a degree?

• I love music o Grade 5 distinction in ukulele and guitar • It is a great outlet for stress and helps to unwind • I also find exercise helpful o Long bike rides and runs keep me both fit mentally and physically

6

How do you cope with stress?

• I always make sure never to work myself over what I can do o For example, when revising I always take breaks – that way I don’t stress too much • I find exercise helpful o Long bike rides and runs keep me fit both mentally and physically • Talking to people and being open about how I am doing o It is better out than in

7

What are your best and worst qualities?

• Worst = sometimes put too much pressure on myself and so end up neglecting a school-work/life balance – trying to combat this by, when making to-do lists adding one item to it which is fun/relaxing • Best = I am very empathetic - shown by my supportive nature and great listening skills – this will help me in medicine as its is an essential aspect of a doctors skillset, you need to be able to recognize and understand your patients emotions even if you cannot directly relate to them

8

What responsibilities do you have?

• Main responsibility = young carer o Responsibility for my sisters for emotional well being o Helping her to develop her independent skills o Accompanying her to events with her friends • DSNE o Volunteer in terms of:  Admin  Supporting adults in a range of settings/activities

9

What do you think will be your greatest challenge in completing medical school or learning how to be a doctor?

• Financial independence o I am inexperienced with managing my own money for bills/food/etc o I will overcome this challenge by developing my budgeting skills – I have already developed these slightly when I took part in NCS and spent a week in halls • Work/life balance o Sometimes I put to much pressure on myself to do well and as a result neglect this o I will overcome this by adding fun/relaxing things to my to-do lists as well

10

What will you do if you aren't accepted to medical school?

• I have applied for and been given an offer a place on a universities biomedical science course o I would hope to transfer to medicine at the end of the first year, but if not would apply for medicine after the course • If all else fails, I would pursue a career in medical research using my biomedical science degree

11

Do you read any medical publications?

• I read BBC health section • Read a multitude for my EPQ o Found the BMJ incredibly useful

12

Tell me about any medical advances and issues you have heard about recently.

• Keeping up to date with the new information regarding coronavirus o Especially the vaccines, the technology used (mRNA) is very interesting o Down’s Syndrome on shielding list Research found in Annals of Internal Medicine showed a 10x higher chance of death and 4x higher chance of hospitilisation Predisposition to pneumonias and acute respiratory distress syndrome in children, airway anomalies associated with immune dysfunction, congenital heart disease Trisomy 21 Research Society states on their website that a 40 year old with DS is like an 80 year old without, when it comes to COVID-19 • Difficult to keep up to date with much else as coronavirus has taken over tremendously

13

What is the difference between primary care and secondary care?

• Primary care is healthcare provided locally by General Practitioners (GPs) o GPs are the first point of consultation for all patients and make up most doctors in the UK • Secondary care is healthcare provided in a hospital for life-threatening emergencies and specialist treatment (for example CAMHS) o A lot of surgeons work in secondary care

14

What is the 'postcode lottery'?

• Despite the name, the NHS is not one organisation. It is broken down into local services (called NHS Trusts) • The Trusts decide how money is spent on a specific area or treatment - not all decide to spend this in the same way • As a result, quality or availability of care can vary across the country • This results in a ‘postcode lottery’, where healthcare delivery is based on geographic location rather than need • Example o The charity Mind found a significant difference in money being spent on mental health across trusts  Surrey Heartlands = £124.48 per person per year  South Yorkshire and Bassetlaw = £220 per person per year

15

What do you think makes a good team?

• Clear communication • Respect of all in the team • Everyone having a role, no matter how big or small • Clear leader • Clearly defined roles • Example football team: o Everyone has a role (their position) which is clearly defined o There is clear communication between team mates o There is respect between not only each teammate but their staff o There is a clear leader (manager) o Everyone has a key part to play, from the captain, to the cleaner

16

What have you gained from your work experience/hobbies/community work?

• Care home o Clear communication – especially listening  Talking to residents o Insight into multidisciplinary team  The caring staff play just as much of a role in the care of the residents as the local GPs o Insight into conditions affecting the elderly  Dementia/increased risk of falls o Empathy/compassion  Listening to and appreciating the stories and emotions of the residents o Respect  My respect for not only the residents but the staff increased masively • DSNE volunteering o Clear communication  In terms of speaking and Makaton o Admin skills  Lot of time working on databases and info packs o Greater awareness of learning disabilities  Downs syndrome/autism/other needs  Learnt how to work with them • Tall ships o Clear communication  Talking clearly with crewmates when under pressure o Teamwork  Working together with my watch to keep the ship running smoothly o Shift work  Having to get up when needed, working when others were in bed o Health/hygiene  Importance of cleanliness • Young carer o Clear communication skills  Talking to my sister, MP’s and schools o Public speaking  Young carer ambassador o Greater awareness of other disabilities and affect on rest of family o Importance of making time for self

17

Would you prescribe the oral contraceptive pill to a 14-year-old girl that is sleeping with her boyfriend?

• Yes o Although having intercourse at that age is not legal, the morally correct thing to do is keep patient confidentiality and reduce the risk of pregnancy for the teenager – if this is what she wants o There are no negatives (apart from side effects) from giving her the pill - is it a safeguarding issue - how old is the boyfriend? - is it concensual?

18

What do you think about abortion/euthanasia etc?

• Euthanasia o It is ethically okay but should be highly controlled  As a doctor, it is your job to not cause any harm to the patient  I would argue that by keeping a patient alive who is suffering massively and will continue to decline and suffer more is doing more harm then just allowing them to die peacefully and with respect  However, I recognise that euthanasia is a difficult thing to control – sound mind etc – and so if it were to be legal, tight restrictions surrounding it would be necessary • Abortion o It is ethically sound but only to an extent  I believe that life begins when the ‘baby’ can survive outside of the womb  Because of this, I believe abortion is ethically sound before this point in time as you are not actually killing a child  However, past this point (as I believe that this is when life begins) I believe it to be wrong

19

How do you see the UK's healthcare system in 20 years' time?

• I would hope that in 20 years’ time the NHS is better funded, with more beds/doctors/nurses, and it is still a public service which is based on clinical need rather than an individual’s ability to pay • However, with the current issues surrounding Brexit, and the rumours of it being sold and privatised, I am unsure how likely my hopes are to come true

20

If you had £1 billion to spend on one element of healthcare, what would you spend it on and why?

• If I had £1 billion to spend on one element of healthcare, I would spend it on research for and healthcare for dementia and Alzheimer’s • This is because it is one of the biggest killers in the UK, and with an aging population it will only get worse • In addition to this, it is one of the ugliest diseases • I have personally experienced this with my great gran and grandpa’s decline in mental state and eventual death, and so have personal experience to how horrible this disease can be

21

What single healthcare intervention could change the health of the population the most?

• Weight loss/healthy eating/life style choices o Reducing obesity and preventing obesity from a young age  Obesity or overweight affected 62.3% of adults in the 12 months to November 2019 in the UK, according to the government website  Obesity affects risk of: • Stroke • Depression • Heart attack • Sleep apnea • Liver disease • Cancer • Type-2 diabetes • Kidney failure • Infertility • Weakened muscles and bones • Joint pain

22

If a child needed a life saving blood transfusion, but their parents were Jehovah’s witnesses, what would you do?

• What is the age of the child? o The child should play somewhat a part in the decision, it is his life  If he does not want it either, then that is his choice, and as his doctor, it is my duty to give him the care he wants  If he does want it, but the parents do not, then I would not know what to do exactly, but I would go about trying to allow the blood transfusion, as at the end of the day it is the child’s body and life, and I don’t believe their parents beliefs should be imposed upon them if they are of sound mind to make a decision themselves • Especially when this decision is life or death

23

Why a doctor, not a nurse?

• The roles of doctors and nurses are not dissimilar o I chose medicine over nursing for a couple of reasons:  Medicine leads to the opportunity of performing surgery, although I am not set on what speciality I want to go into, I believe some form surgery is a possibility  Medicine has a larger focus on diagnosis and treatment, whereas nursing has a larger emphasis on patient care • Although I recognise both are important, the idea of diagnosis and treatment appeals to me more

24

What do you make of the recent changes to the NHS junior doctor contracts?

• Are these the amendments to the 2016 contract? o I think they’re great  Better pay progression  Better pay protection  Better night working contract o But I don’t think they’re important to me personally  I don’t want to into the job for the money, I want to go into it for the love of it

25

What is your opinion on the effects of premature babies on the NHS?

• I recognise that the health effects caused by premature birth can have lasting affects which need treatment even a lot later in life o Increased risk to different conditions • But at the end of the day its still a human life and deserves the treatment it needs

26

What is you opinion on private healthcare, compared to the NHS?

• Private health care has its benefits o Most obviously the shorter wait times • But I believe the NHS is better o Built on the foundation of care being provided based on clinical need rather than ability to pay  This is phenomenal o What the NHS has done for Anda (BAHA)

27

What is the role of a doctor?

• Clinical scientists who prevent, diagnose, treat, and care for patients with illness, disease, and injury to maintain physical and mental health alongside the rest of the healthcare team (multidisciplinary) o This can take place in a range of settings from rural GP to big city hospital (primary and secondary care) • They also conduct medical education and research along side their clinical practice

28

Can you explain the differences between the different types of doctors?

• Medicine o Cardiologist  Specialise in medical practice concerning the cardiovascular system (the heart and blood vessels) o Immunologist  Specialise in medical practice concerning the immune system o Dermatologist  Specialise in medical practice concerning the skin • Surgery o Trauma and orthopaedic surgery  Specialised in surgery for acutely ill patients and those with injuries of the musculoskeletal system (muscles, broken bones, ligaments, tendons, and nerves) o Plastic surgery  Specialised in surgery for reconstructing or repairing parts of the body, either for the purpose of cosmetics or post-surgery/injury o Neurosurgery  Specialised in surgery for the brain • GP o A community based doctor who treats patients with minor or chronic illnesses and refers that with more serious conditions to specialists • AHP - NOT DOCTORS BUT PART OF MDT o Dietician  An expert on diet and nutrition o Speech and Language Therapy  Promote communication, aid with dysphagia, and developmental/acquired language difficulties o Occupational therapy  Aid people in overcoming difficulties with everyday living (fine motor skills, sensory, and adaptations in house)

29

What happens to doctors after medical school?

• PMQ • Gain provisional GMC registration • FY1 • Gain full GMC registration • FY2 • Train for speciality (5-8 years) or train for GP (3 years) • Gain fellowship and membership of respective college • Consultant or GP • Could also undertake Fixed Term Speciality Training Appointments or Locum Appointments for Training • Could also go into teaching, researching, or public health worker instead of medicine

30

Tell me about a time you worked well in a team.

• The Tall Ships o Clear communication  Talking clearly with crewmates when under pressure o Teamwork  Working together with my watch to keep the ship running smoothly o Shift work  Having to get up when needed, working when others were in bed Respect of all in the team People of different ethnicities and religious which we had to respect their individual beliefs and adjust accordingly Everyone having a role, no matter how big or small Everyone’s role on the ship was equally important as without one another it wouldn’t all fit together, from the potato peelers to the captain Clear leader with clearly defined roles No one gets mixed up in who is coordinating the plan of action, everyone knows what to do, didn’t have everyone all trying to steer