GP organises Portsmouth ball to help colleagues forget stress of job

A BLACK-tie event of music and dancing aims to help GPs forget the stress and pressure of their jobs.

Saturday, 3rd March 2018, 5:34 am

Penny Wilson, a GP in Portsmouth, has organised the second GP Ball following the success of a previous event in 2016.

The night will have food, a live band and DJ and lots of music for doctors in general practice to meet, have a laugh and relax.

The first ball was organised following low morale among GPs in the city and surrounding areas and Penny, a GP partner at Trafalgar Group Medical Practice, said similar feelings are still a problem now.

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‘I decided to organise a second GP Ball because morale is still really low in the NHS,’ she said.

‘There’s so much negativity surrounding the NHS and there have been certain cases surrounding individual GPs.

‘It is having an affect on the workforce.

‘We go to lots of meetings together to plan for the future and the future of general practice and every day we work so hard to deliver the best care.

‘GPs are still working in a really difficult environment. The first ball wasn’t about a one-off, let’s give ourselves a pat on the back.

‘It is a message that these problems from 18 months ago are still here now.

‘But sometimes this can be missed so the GP Ball will give us the opportunity to get together outside of all of the meetings and just relax.’

The first event in 2016, held at the Royal Marines Museum in Eastney, was attended by 93 GPs.

Penny is hoping for similar numbers at this year’s ball in April, at the new venue of the Spinnaker Tower.

She added: ‘The venue holds 100 people and I think we will get close to that. The first 50 tickets sold out in a couple of weeks. It is great to see GPs from the last event returning and new ones engaging with the event.

‘We always get a really good mix of people from GPs who have been in the area for years to trainees.’

Penny said it was important for the new GPs to attend and see the benefits of the role and to interact with others.

‘We have a recruitment issue so it is important to encourage these new GPs to stay in primary care.’

The GP Ball is on April 28 and has been supported by bank Handelsbanken, Lalys Pharmacy and Goldchem Pharmacy, DR Solicitors, Tudor Lodge and Pallant Medical Chambers.