Doctor: How Does Knowing Mrs Jones' Sexuality Help Me Treat Her Bunions?

16 October 2017, 09:27

Dr Peter Swinyard told Nick Ferrari questions about sexuality would unnecessarily take up valuable face-to-face time with his patients.

Under new NHS guidelines health professionals in England will be told to ask patients older than 16 about their sexual orientation.

NHS England said no-one would be forced to answer the question but recording the data would ensure that "no patient is discriminated against".

Nick Ferrari spoke to Dr Peter Swinyard about the proposed changes, who joked he couldn't see how it would improve patient care.

Dr Peter Swinyard told Nick he struggled to see how the changes would help him to treat Mrs Jones' bunions
Dr Peter Swinyard told Nick he struggled to see how the changes would help him to treat Mrs Jones' bunions. Picture: LBC

The Chairman of the Family Doctor Association said he envisaged the voluntary question unnecessarily consuming time with his patients, which is already in short supply.

He said: "I think, with absolute horror, yet another thing is getting between us and our patients.

"The most important thing in the precious and short time we have with each patient is actually to deal with the problems they're coming in to talk to me about.

"Of course, there are certain circumstances under which it is quite useful to know their sexual orientation and behaviour.

"But it shouldn't be the first question in every confrontation.

"You can imagine the situation, someone comes in to see me about their bunions.

"It isn't the first thing I want to ask in a consultation, taking up the very precious few minutes we have with each other."

Watch the interview at the top of this page.

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