A disgraced doctor in rural Cambridgeshire who neglected to advise some of his patients to go on a diet and cut down on their alcohol intake has been struck off the medical register. The General Medical Council’s action follows the suspension of Dr Julian Hawkins, 47, from the general practice near Ely after the shocking omission was revealed.
It is understood that as many as 25 patients may have suffered at the hands of Dr Hawkins as he ignored the latest Government initiative on combatting binge drinking and obesity. Under the guidelines announced in July last year, all patients must be told that they are overweight and drink too much, even if their weight and alcohol consumption is already in line with Government advice.
One of Dr Hawkins’ victims, who preferred not to be named, welcomed the news of his suspension. “Dr Hawkins is not like a proper doctor at all,” he said. “I didn’t get the chance to lie about going to the gym regularly or strategically underestimate the number of units I drink each week before I was out the door. He did do a good job on my verucca though.”
The local Health Trust has acted swiftly to minimise the damage caused by Dr Hawkins’ malpractice. All patients’ records have been annotated with a demand that they are weighed and breathalysed during every doctor’s appointment, irrespective of their symptoms. Similarly, waiting rooms are being equipped with screens showing a ten minute video on the dangers of alcohol and obesity. It is calculated that each patient will on average see the entire video at least twice during every visit.
Meanwhile, medical receptionists will continue to be obstructive and unpleasant, although the current practice of them referring to patients as ‘you fat pisshead’ is under review.