| Last updated
A GP has left her surgery behind for a career as a fashioned designer after saying that she was fed up with the long shifts, phone appointments and stress of working as a doctor.
You might have noticed that the NHS is a little stretched just now. The winter flu epidemic and a whole load of other stuff means that working as a doctor is a bloody stressful task at the minute.
Linda Thomas has had enough of that and is leaving her practise to try her hand at becoming an eco-fashion designer (which is totally a thing in 2018).
Her work had become so stressful that she felt that she had to leave to pursue another career option. This is great news for the world of eco-fashion, but worse news for the medical profession.
Linda had worked as a GP in Bristol for 16 years, but her days consisted of back to back appointments with only two 20 minute breaks for admin that were usually taken up by appointments that had overrun.
Dr Thomas explained her decision to leave: "I had to leave while I could still be the kind of doctor I wanted to be, and give patients the attention they deserved.
"If I'd stayed, I would have had to become a different type of doctor. I would be broken after a long shift.
"Sometimes I'd come home shaking. GPs are under such particular pressure - we are talking about a system that's systematically breaking down GPs.
"These are some incredibly dedicated and talented people, yet I don't know anyone who is planning to stay in general practice in the long term.
"It's about understanding that these are resilient and dedicated doctors.
"I'm of a generation where as a junior doctor we would go to work on a Saturday morning and not finish our shift until Monday evening.
"We have all made it past that point and so have had to learn ways to manage stress and tiredness but this system is now so relentless.
"We don't need to get taught new ways to change ourselves we need a system change so that it supports both GPs and their patients."
Numbers of doctors are falling dramatically, and the number of GP positions that are currently not filled increased four-fold between 2012 and 2014.
These stats were found through research done by the University of Exeter who hope that they will encourage policy makers to change how GP surgeries are run.
Professor John Campbell, who led the research said: "Our new research is a significant study of what is driving the exodus of GPs from direct patient care.
"Policy makers need to take this on board and address these issues to retain GPs and encourage medical students to take up a career in general practice.
"Despite recent government plans to address the problem, numbers are continuing to fall.
"If we do not act now, many areas will face a severe shortfall in the number of GPs providing care for patients in their area."
Chosen for YouChosen for You
Most Read StoriesMost Read