GPs’ Cornwall Calling

07 June 2019 | Jo Doverman

Nothing beats a bit of community spirit, hey? And who better to advertise a new job in a tiny village than the locals themselves, who can truly PR the hell out of their hometown and the employment opportunity?

Let’s take a trip down to Cornwall shall we, to that well-known fishing village of … Mevagissey. Not only is ‘Mevagissey’ a fun word to say, it’s also a gorgeous harbour village located just south of the slightly more well-known St Austell, in Cornwall.

Residents of Mevagissey are currently experiencing a job shortage like no other; they’ve run out of GPs to run the local doctor’s surgery after it was announced that practice is at risk of closure when the current partner ends their contract on 31st July. A lack of replacement means that some 5,300 patients will be forced to travel further afield for any appointments – potentially leading to some damaging publicity for the great National Health Service.

In true Cornish community style, however, the Mevagissey residents have taken it upon themselves to launch a campaign to find their new GP. Who needs a creative PR agency after all?!

The ‘Will you be my GP?’ campaign is beginning to gain traction, with the likes of The Guardian and The Daily Mail both sharing the story this week. A rather witty Twitter account has been set up too; sharing the top reasons why their new GP should relocate to their beautiful village.

The top reasons and personal favourites of mine, to become Mevagissey’s new GP include:

  1. It’s likely the potential new GP currently faces a commute on the motorway, crowded trains or expensive travel. Yet, a move to Mevagissey means the biggest problem you’ll face is the high tide sort of blocking the road home a bit. No biggy, just sit back and enjoy a coastal sunset with some freshly caught fish n chips
  2. You can go stand up paddling boarding, surfing and scuba diving every weekend, if you want! Can’t do that in big fancy London, can ya?!
  3. It’s a really, really nice place to live and there is one hell of a community feel – they mention this a lot, so I think they’re all just a bunch of best mates down there living their best lives by the sea

The mystery ‘Tweeter’ has also jumped on the back of the St Michael’s Mount job advert, which is seeking a new gardener for the fairy-tale island in Cornwall. They’re even (jokingly) offering a package deal if the GP just so happens to be married to a gardener!

Whilst the majority of the social media activity is very light-hearted and pun-tastic, you can really get a sense of the urgency and need for a new GP underneath it all. Thousands of patients, ranging from babies to young children and adults, to the elderly and summertime tourists, will be left abandoned with no easy access to a doctor should they need help.

The #WillYouBeMyGP campaign is a great example of communities coming together to PR their favourite place; their hometown! I really hope the NHS don’t close down this very important doctor’s surgery come the end of July, and I’d like to think one very lucky GP is already packing their bags for a life by the coast – best of luck Mevagissey!