Radio 4’s Untold: GPs in crisis

The extent to which many GP practices are in trouble now was clearly highlighted in a recent episode of the BBC Radio 4 series “The Untold”, presented by Grace Dent. The series documents the untold dramas of 21st century Britain and this week’s episode looked at the crisis facing two GPs in a 10,000 list size practice in Bournemouth. It is definitely worth a listen.

Like many GP practices this particular practice faced closure, the key reason being that it simply could not recruit and retain enough GPs. The tremendous stress and strain on the two GPs, a husband and wife team, was evident and the knock on effect that this pressure was having on their family life was really well articulated by both themselves and their young children.

The possible solutions to the crisis that the GPs considered will be familiar to GPs and PMs and included new workforce roles and potential mergers with other local practices, but as we all know, these solutions are not always easy to implement. The canine solution that the family implemented was rather unusual but it seemed to work wonders for them!

The programme “The Untold Doctor Doctor” was originally broadcast on Radio 4 on Monday 1st May 2017 at 11am and is available as a podcast on the BBC iPlayer here:

If your practice is facing similar difficulties to those in the programme and you would like to have an informal chat with us to see if we can help please do contact Nigel Grinstead at or Heather Morley at

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