Read between the lines

Those of you expecting some inspired commentary on this week’s cabinet reshuffle and the change of Health Secretary are about to be very disappointed…!

This week I want to talk about the health advances you read about in the papers or online.

Hardly a day goes by without the media carrying stories about the latest life limiting (or lengthening) research or news of ‘wonder’ drugs to save us all. This isn’t a rant at the media, I understand that advances in medical knowledge and treatments are exciting and readers obviously have more than a passing interest. But many of these stories are placed by research teams who are competing for funding or notoriety or need help from other professionals in their field.

Whatever the motives, it often raises expectations which translate into very disappointed patients. New drugs and treatments can take years to test and develop until we’re sure they’re safe and more importantly that they work. What you read about today may not become a reality for ages – if at all.

Please read between the lines and hold the thought that your GP is doing his or her best with what’s available to them now. You can help by taking the medicines prescribed for you exactly as we ask you to; no more and no less. That way you’ll increase your chances of being around to see some of today’s headlines become the wonder drugs of tomorrow.

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Filed under Chair's blog: Dr David Kelly

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