’I unreservedly recommend this book. You truly will be touched and inspired by it.’
Title: Your life in my hands
Author: Rachel Clarke
Reviewer: Dr Peter Carter OBE
What was it like?
This is one of the most poignant and relevant books of our time, I could not put it down. Each page in different ways will challenge and inspire the reader in equal measure. The book brings into sharp relief the current issues and challenges in our NHS. Although written from a medical perspective it is relevant to everyone who uses or works in the NHS. Rachel Clarke’s humanity shines through. Jeremy Hunt and Theresa May come in for particular attention, however not a syllable is written about them with any malice. Far from it, Rachel comments are written with nothing other than her honest and sincere concern about the state of the NHS and its effect on patient care and its staff.
What were the highlights?
The patient stories are particularly moving as is Rachel’s recognition that the NHS survives on the commitment and team work of its staff right across the spectrum, not just clinicians such as nurses and doctors but all the staff including domestics, porters et al. The book is also honest about how some staff can have their compassion drained out of them due to overwork and lack of support. This is not a Motherhood and apple pie insight into the NHS and will unnerve some readers when they understand the level of responsibility and workload that junior doctors have to cope with.
Strengths and weaknesses
For me there are no weaknesses. The narrative is clear with a good economy of line and all of the content is relevant and interesting. I’m sure this book will be a best seller and I hope Rachel will have the awards and recognition she undoubtedly deserves
Who should read it
This is a book for everyone. The public, politicians, the staff who work in the health services both public and private. It should be on the recommended reading list for students training in any of the health professions be it nursing, medicine, physiotherapy and so on, not to mention those aspiring to a career in health service management.
your life in my hands