Explore: Healthcare

Trainee GP
Kings College Hospital NHS Trust

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Hi, my name is Kyaw, and I’m a doctor training to be a GP.

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My job involves working at GP practice, seeing patients who come into the surgery

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having consultations over the telephone and making house visits.

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It’s very long hours – I get in at 8.30

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I don’t finish until 6:30 and it’s pretty much nonstop.

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I think one of the best things about being a GP

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is that you don’t know who’s going to walk in through that door so

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you don’t know what cases you’re going to be presented with.

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It might be a simple call to a skin rash to someone expressing chest pain

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so that variety is always interesting and always keeps things fresh.

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The drawbacks are the long hours.

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It’s the constant pressure.

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But you tend to work in teams, as you do in a lot of medicine,

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and just the interactions with your team members

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just really helps you to get through the day.

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I’ve taken a very unconventional route into medicine.

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I didn’t really enjoy school.

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I was never good at exams.

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I sat through GCSEs and A-levels, did very badly,

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but managed to scrape into university somehow.

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For my A-levels, I chose biology, chemistry and maths I think

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I did a degree in biotechnology, which is completely unrelated to medicine.

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I didn’t know what I wanted to do with my life.

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And then I went on to do a masters in IT – again had no idea

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what I wanted to do, where I wanted to go.

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So I then spent the next seven to ten years of my twenties

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just travelling around, doing odd jobs, living in different countries.

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And it wasn’t until my early thirties

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I’d say that I thought, I want to pursue medicine.

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I think the first thing I’d say is resilience.

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You are going to encounter failures

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either on a professional level, on a personal level, you will fail exams

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and you’ve got to have that inner core of belief in yourself

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and to have that stubbornness and just to get through it.

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So resilience, I think you’re going

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to be working in teams throughout your medical career

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and sometimes you might encounter people you don’t get on with

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You’ve just got to be professional about it.

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And yeah, and learn how to work with people and have empathy

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with not only your colleagues

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but more importantly, your patients

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And the most important thing is never lose sight of the fact that you’re there

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to help your patients.

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For my own experience, what I want to say is that it’s OK, it’s

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OK that you don’t know what you want to do

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when you’re in your early twenties, or in your mid twenties or even late thirties.

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I think there are always options out there.

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And if you if you have, you know, you set your mind to it, you will get there somehow.


“It’s OK that you don’t know what you want to do when you’re in your early twenties, or in your mid-twenties or even late thirties. I think there are always options out there.”

Kyaw has taken an unusual route into medicine. After a degree in biotechnology and a master’s in IT, he spent the next ten years living in different countries and doing odd jobs, before deciding to become a doctor.

More information about Medical practitioners

average salary

The UK average salary is £29,813

average weekly hours

There are 37.5 hours in the average working week

44%  male 
56%  female 

The UK workforce is 47% female and 53% male

Future employment

Future employment?

? Medical practitioners diagnose mental and physical injuries, disorders and diseases, prescribe and give treatment, recommend preventative action, and conduct medical education and research activities. They may specialise in particular areas of modern medicine or work in general practice and, where necessary, refer the patient to a specialist.
Entrants require a university degree from a medical school recognised by the General Medical Council followed by a year of pre-registration training as a house officer. Some medical schools operate graduate entry schemes. Once the pre-registration period as house officer is completed, doctors undertake up to two years postgraduate training in a chosen speciality.
  • Examines patient, arranges for any necessary x-rays or other tests and interprets results;
  • Diagnoses condition and prescribes and/or administers appropriate treatment/surgery;
  • Administers medical tests and inoculations against communicable diseases;
  • Supervises patient’s progress and advises on diet, exercise and other preventative action;
  • Refers patient to specialist where necessary and liaises with specialist;
  • Prepares and delivers lectures, undertakes research, and conducts and participates in clinical trials;
  • Supervises the implementation of care and treatment plans by other healthcare providers.
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