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Hot Topics Blog

Women's Health for Primary Care

Stephanie De Giorgio - 23 May, 2019

If you have turned on the TV or radio in the last week, you will probably have seen or heard some of the coverage of the menopause on BBC Breakfast, and discussion around Louis Theroux’s incredible documentary on the most unwell mums, admitted to mother and baby units for treatment of their perinatal mental health disorders.

As someone who spends a great deal of time immersed in the world of Women’s Health, it is easy to get a skewed view of the care that GPs provide for our female patients. The world of medical TV doesn’t always give GPs an easy ride and women who haven’t experienced good care, are often those most likely to take part and this was the case in some of the menopause coverage, however, most of it was also excellent. Louis Theroux showed his usual amazing interviewing skills and empathic approach during his documentary and I can highly recommend it as a difficult, (it took me a week to build up the courage to watch it), but thoroughly necessary piece of viewing for anyone who looks after postnatal women. 

Whenever there is significant coverage on a health issue, it can be predicted that we will get more people considering coming to talk to us in our surgeries about it, and sometimes a bit of pre-emptive learning can make those predictable consultations easier to handle. HRT and the treatment of the menopause is one of the hottest and most regular topics for discussion I see on online GP fora - well, apart from diazepam for flying (don’t) and giving antibiotics for dental infections (also don’t!). I think this is because it can seem such a hugely complicated topic, not helped by the fact that for so many years it was deemed unsafe, meaning a whole cohort of GPs were trained with very limited experience of prescribing. In actual fact, the 2015 NICE guidance and other educational resources can make the process of deciding who should get HRT and in what format surprisingly simple. 

Here on NB Hot Topics, Zoe Norris and myself are aiming to further demystify it for you on our NEW 2019/2020 Women’s Health Course. We cover menopause in great detail and provide you with some easy resources to take home to simply your prescribing. As well as this, we cover Perinatal Mental Health, Contraception for different groups of women and a multitude of other topics. 

So arm yourself with the knowledge you need to feel more confident in your management of your female patients by joining us on 28th June in London or 19th November in Birmingham. If you can’t make these dates in person, why not join us for our series of live Wednesday evening webinars on the 19th June, 26th June, 3rd July and 10th July. 

Zoe Norris and I look forward to having you join us.