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Sunday 25 September 2016
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The general practice poster boy

This week, our inside practice partner is overwhelmed by the start of flu season – not to mention the QOF ...

The jostling for position has already begun at the surgery – and that's just the doctors!

Our flu blitz is now almost upon us, and the rota is out. It seems that everyone wants to immunise – have I missed something?

In order to boost uptake, we're running our annual poster campaign. For the second year running, we've written to local primary and secondary schools inviting them to submit posters with the theme of the flu jab!

No such thing as negative publicity?
Last year we had a great response and some positive publicity in the local freebie newspaper as well. The only drawback was that the editor had obviously had a moment of great hilarity in the office and my picture, congratulating local school children, was underneath the headline for another article, entitled "Child Abductor Freed"! This caused a large number of rather "amusing" quips to be fired in my direction from our receptionists.

The registrars are still playing dodgems in the car park, as all the partners park their cars in impossible positions, meaning the registrars cannot access spaces. It's truly a sight to behold.

Moles and dolls
Last week, l sat in on a couple of interesting meetings. That in itself seems improbable.

The first was an introduction to a (skin) mole-scanning device that grades suspicious moles. This may be a useful tool in sieving out some of our mole referrals and reduce the burden of new referrals in this brave new world of practice-based commissioning. We are evaluating how useful this might be, before taking the leap and purchasing the device and its associated IT.

The second interesting meeting was with our chronic disease/undercover nurse, who cruises our local hospital looking for our patients, particularly those that are exceeding trim points!

Each week, one of the partners trawls through our admission data and quizzes our nurse. This week, I appeared to be the only partner who wasn't on call/rescuing sick children or had another commitment. We had a couple of patients who'd reached the century (100 days after admission) – it was interesting to hear of the various obstacles to discharge.

The annual cardiopulmonary resuscitation update has passed, without too many changes. We find it's always useful to test our defibrillator on a resuscitation doll, rather than on the real thing. The resuscitation trainer took the doll home in a bag. He took the bus – obviously he's mindful of his carbon footprint.

Qoffing snacks
We have an extraordinary evening meeting this week to discuss the Quality and Outcomes Framework. It's a three-line whip for partners, salaried, retained and registrar doctors. We usually follow these evening meetings with some healthy snack before winding our way home, fearing that 1 April is closer than we thought!