Wednesday, 10 June 2009

What you need from a doctor

Sir Richard Bayliss was consultant physician at London's Westminster Hospital from 1954 until his retirement in 1981. He was physician to Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth from 1964 until he retired. I only have vague recollections of him from my days of training at the Westminster but am greatly enjoying reading his autobiography,  In sickness and in health, written just a year before he died in 2006.

One of his early mentors whilst he was a junior at St Thomas' Hopsital was Sir Maurice Cassidy.  Sir Maurice was also an eminent physician and had attended both King George Vth and King George VIth. It was Sir Maurice who taught Bayliss that, 'every doctor would be more understanding of his patients if he himself had experienced three things-a serious acute illness, a chronic illness and an endoscopic examination.'

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