Powys: A Day in the Life

2002

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Health

Illus. By Rob Davies

Health professionals

Health care in the United Kingdom is provided principally by the National Health Service, a service funded through the state which was set up just over 50 years ago. It is now the largest organisation in Europe and employs many different health professionals and other staff.

Powys is included within the Dyfed Powys Health Authority, which covers an area over half the total land mass of Wales, and attends to the health of over 470,000 residents.

One GP's (a doctor working in general medical practice - also known as family doctors) working day consisted of the following:

9.00 - 11.30

Morning surgery

11.30 - 13.00

Visits, hospital ward round

14.00 - 15.30

Paperwork in surgery

15.30 - 16.15

Emergency in A & E

16.20 - 18.30

Evening surgery

18.30 - 19.30

Hospital

after 19.00

On call for the whole night.


At the end of a working day one Montgomeryshire dentist says

  • 5.15 35 patients seen in course of day

Another is an occupational therapist, who describes her work:

  • Illus. By Rob Davies
    Having dropped the children at school I continued to work at the Community Mental health Team in …. where I work two days a week as an occupational therapist, helping people with a variety of mental health problems to reduce the impact of these problems on the everyday lives and enable them to achieve meaningful lifestyles. I have only two weeks left with the team as I am leaving to take up post in Learning Disabilities at the beginning of October.

    I spent the first hour of the day liasing with colleagues, much of it discussing the various pressures on the team, and dealing with messages received since I was last in work on Friday. After that I set out on my visits, I fitted in 5 visits, 3 of which were my final visits with these people, with 2 being discharged from the team, one of these was a real success story which gave me a boost. I returned to the office at 4.30 made a couple of phone calls and finished work just after 5pm
    .

Finally another example of changing health care is in the development of new drugs and medicines. One such scientist

  • Posted letter in village then started 120 miles drive to Coventry to work. I run clinical trials into new medicines and was visiting a GP surgery in Coventry which is trialing a new treatment for Arthritis.



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