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You can work flexible hours
Thatâs what first led me to becoming a prison GP. I left the GP surgery where I worked previously because I used to have to work late into the evening and I wanted to finish a bit earlier. I have children and this position enables me to finish early and work part-time at the prison, which suits me perfectly.
Itâs personally rewarding
You really want to change the inmatesâ lives for the better. Iâm familiar with most of the problems prisoners have relating to drug and alcohol misuse as I previously worked for a UK addiction charity. Iâm aware of the magnitude of the problem and feel confident that I can help. I treat the prisoners like I would anyone else, I donât need to know why theyâre there or what theyâve done. If they open up and you listen to their stories, some of them are really sad and you want to make a difference. There are risks working in a prison, but you canât over think and worry you might get hurt; you could be injured walking down the road! I feel like I can make a difference to the prisonersâ lives.
You see a change in some prisoners
I saw a prisoner the other day who told me coming to jail has changed him and made him think differently. He is now doing his A Levels with the intention of going to university. Itâs good because, when I saw him six weeks ago, he was in a bad way â but now heâs a totally different person.
Iâm less stressed and feel appreciated
If Iâm running behind in the prison, itâs usually because of security reasons, and although sometimes prisoners get upset at having to wait, they know itâs not in my hands. Itâs hard to get an appointment with me so when they do, the prisoners appreciate it. I recently had a prisoner who kept saying thank you and shook my hand because he was so grateful that I was able to see him and hopefully help him.
Working as a prison GP is more social and dynamic
In a prison youâll find that every day is different, itâs a bit like working in an accident and emergency department; itâs dynamic and no two days are the same, which I like. Itâs a social environment as well â I feel like Iâm helping prisoners as their doctor but also as their confidant.
If using your GP experience in a prison environment appeals to you, contact our specialist team to discuss your next steps on firstname.lastname@example.org or 01277 217777.