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The Doctor’s call

So how do you explain the NHS to a four year old? Always going to be a big ask, especially when Dr Grifflet is on his pre-0800 round. Admittedly he looks no younger than many doctors these days, but he takes the job just as seriously.

 I’ve had my temperature checked, reflexes tested, heart audited, ears investigated and eyes assessed. Exhaustively.

“How much do I owe you, Doctor?”

“Don’t be silly, Dad. We don’t pay for the doctor.”

“Why’s that?”

“People don’t.”

“That’s because of the National Health Service.”

“What’s that, Dad?”

“We all pay in money to a big pot when we get paid by work and then when people get ill and need a doctor it’s free.”

“Like Mammy does in the hospitals?”


“That’s a good idea, Dad.”

“The very best, lovely boy.”

Couldn’t be simpler, really.

I hope to God the day never comes when there’s a plastic credit card machine in his doctor set.

Here’s hoping.

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