Dr Penny Edrich, Partner GP at The Milton Surgery
Please can you share with us why you decided on reading medicine at university? What does a productive day look like for you at Milton Surgery and why?
I have always wanted to be a Doctor, since about aged 11 when I realised that I was too allergic to animals to become a Vet! My initial career was in Intensive care and acute medicine, but I switched to General Practice in 2006 to become the first trainee at Milton surgery, and stayed there ever since. I love the variety of our days, and mostly enjoy the clinical contact with patients, alongside the academic side of my involvement with research, and the occasional trip away from Milton to work as a PLAB examiner for the GMC.
If you were not a doctor, what other job would you have gone for and why?
My Plan B was to be a costume designer for period dramas – I did end up designing and making most of the costumes for some of our medical school theatre shows, and, probably to my children’s embarrassment, I have made their history dress-up day outfits for
school over the last few years.
So, I know you have a big passion for education, Penny. Could you share with us why this is so important to you?
I enjoy having trainees and students in the surgery, as they challenge us to focus on why we do what we do, and drive us to provide ongoing high-quality care for our patients in Weston. I joined the Planet committee to help maintain this unique time for local GPs to be able to get together monthly to meet with our secondary care colleagues and discuss best practice. This has underpinned the great foundation across the town for the success of Pier as a PCN.
If you could make one small change within Pier Health Group, what would it be and why?
COVID permitting, the chance to socialise together again! It would be great to share staff between practices as mentors, perhaps on short term sabbaticals, enabling skills and innovative ways of working to be shared amongst our surgeries.
What is the most rebellious thing you have ever done, Penny? No one is reading this, so do spill!
I don’t think I am a rebel! I will drive down no-entry lanes in car parks if no one is coming, and I do enjoy a bit of ‘guerrilla gardening,’ but that’s about it.
Do you love or hate Marmite and why?
I love marmite, it’s a great source of B vitamins for vegetarians, and my ‘guilty pleasure’ snack is eating it with salt and vinegar crisps in a sandwich after exercise…
Winter? Summer? Autumn? Or Spring?
Spring definitely, with all the signs of new life appearing after the dreary winter. My birthday is the first day of spring, so it’s always the start of a new year for me personally.