25 January 2022

Your covid problems, solved

Humoural Theory RedHerring

Because a GP can have anything they want if they just close their eyes and dream.


With many more patients testing positive for covid-19, TMR spoke with Professor Candid about caring for patients at home.  

TMR: A lot of patients are now using RATs – well, if they can get one – and contacting GPs if they get a positive result. Our readers tell us this is putting general practice under considerable strain. 

PC: Absolutely, although we do now have very clear guidelines for GPs available on the college website.

TMR: What advice can you give GPs about triaging patients? Who should GPs be worried about? 

PC: Well, this all comes down to assessing disease severity, of course, and we have some very good clinical tools to help with this. Taking a patient’s obs including their temperature and oxygen sats is of course an essential part of that assessment. 

TMR: Many patients don’t have access to a thermometer or a pulse oximeter at home though. What advice can you give to GPs who have patients in this situation?

PC: Well we can always hope. 

TMR: What does that mean?

PC: Well, when I hope for something I screw my eyes up really really tight and wish for it. You know, something like that.

TMR: I’m not sure I follow you.  

PC: Well, let me give you an example. When I lose a tooth, and for some reason I lose quite a lot of them, I wrap it up in some tissue and put it under my pillow. And before I go to sleep I hope and hope that the Tooth Fairy comes. And most of the time she does!

TMR: Eh?? 

PC: I can’t put it any simpler than that.

TMR: So what you’re saying is that GPs should just screw up their eyes and hope that a pulse oximeter and thermometer somehow magically appears in every patient’s home?

PC: Yes, something like that.

TMR: Is there anything else you’re wishing for?

PC: Well ever since I was a boy I’ve wished that I could live in a magical kingdom and have my very own dragon. I’d fly around on its back slaying knights and doing cool stuff. You look confused but let me just say it’s amazing what you can achieve if you just wish hard enough.

TMR: Coming back to covid Professor, how are GPs expected to get their hands on monoclonal antibodies for their at-risk patients?

PC: Why from the magical kingdom of course! In the kingdom there are rivers of monoclonal antibody and the pixies and dwarves who live there hand out free pulse oximeters and thermometers and rapid antigen tests to anybody and everybody and they’re all looked after by a fairy princess called Princess Buttercup. Surely you’ve been there? Everybody’s been there, right?? 

TMR: … Errrr … do you have any more advice for GPs who might be struggling to look after their patients in the community?

PC: Nah I’m good. Say you’re really pretty. You look just like Princess Buttercup.

TMR: ……. 

PC: Can we swap numbers?

TMR: No. 

PC: Oh dear, I think I’ve just lost another tooth.