In Praise Of Generalists

Published: 18th October 2017

For those who don’t know him already, Dr Jonathan Griffiths is a GP and Chair of Vale Royal CCG. He’s also a blogger and our readers are recommended to have a look at his blog, probably starting with the one called I Am A GP.

The reason we’re writing about Dr Griffiths today is that he recorded a TEDx talk late last year, “Choosing to be a Jack of All Trades” (you can see it here on YouTube). It looks at the value of being a generalist medic in a society where specialist medics might be seen as being more valued or respected.

The talk, which has been viewed over 5,000 times, examines how our health system can’t function without GPs, the cornerstone of the NHS system. It is unashamed in its advocacy of the GP’s role and paints a compelling picture of GPs as heroes of the NHS. It argues correctly that, without GPs, specialists would be less effective and public health would suffer.

The talk might have been called “in praise of generalists” and that’s no bad thing. Here at Consultant Connect we recognise more than most the roles of generalists and specialists in delivering public health together. We also recognise the value of breaking down the barriers between them to ensure that patients get the care they need as effectively as possible.

The talk is 15 minutes long but, in case you don’t have that much time, the above picture by @the_littlemedic is a fantastic summary of the talk.

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