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This week marks the 70th anniversary of the NHS and the celebrations are really inspiring. A couple of years ago when the junior doctor contract strikes occurred in my 3rd year the outlook felt quite bleak for a career in the NHS. Many of my friends considered switching career paths and I think we all felt quite unsure of how our working life would be shaped by the changes. However, 2 years on and now about to start final year…there really is a different mood in the air.
We know that the life of a junior doctor is going to be hard, and we know that it will be a shock from medical school life. We also know that we won’t be clocking off at 5pm every day, or earning enough to be able to afford a house asap. But, we also know that we will have a fulfilling and rewarding job no matter what changes occur to the NHS or our training (obviously to an extent that is!). If one thing trickled down to medical students after the junior doctor strikes it was that a career in medicine is one that makes a difference. The consultants on the wards would reassure us students that we did make the right career choice and that they do really love their job.
With the NHS turning 70 this week it does make me reflect on how the NHS (despite it’s rocky patches) is an incredible organisation that it is full of hardworking, dedicated people. Our training at Imperial College Hospitals has been a daily reminder of this- and we are so lucky to be trained by some of the most caring and knowledgeable doctors around. Studying medicine at Imperial- and in the NHS- really is inspiring and I can’t believe I am only months away now from medical school finals. Final year starts in 2 weeks time, applications for a real graduate job begins in 2 months and junior doctor life in the brilliant NHS is now fast approaching…!!