This is Going to Hurt – Adam Kay

Published By: Picador
Pages: 280
Date Released: 12/09/2017

Welcome to the life of a junior doctor: 97-hour weeks, life and death decisions, a constant tsunami of bodily fluids, and the hospital parking meter earns more than you.

Scribbled in secret after endless days, sleepless nights and missed weekends, Adam Kay’s “This is Going to Hurt” provides a no-holds-barred account of his time on the NHS front line. Hilarious, horrifying and heartbreaking, this diary is everything you wanted to know – and more than a few things you didn’t – about life on and off the hospital ward.


What can I say?

As someone who has had her fair share of illness and hospital visits, I felt like I have come to know the inner workings of a hospital and its staff. What a fool I was. Adam’s no-nonsense, no sugar-coating explanation of his time as a doctor is scary, funny, stressful, heart-warming and heart-breaking.

Medical books are ten a penny at the moment, and yet I feel that Adam is the go-to-man for titbits on working in a hospital. His diary entries are endlessly fascinating, and you realise he has seen some shit. But the thing that stayed with me is not necessarily what happened in the hospital, but how it affected his life outside of it. Most people go to work, get through their work day, clock off and go home, forgetting about work until the next day. And yet doctors and nurses, after a 14 hour shift, often with no rest or breaks, will go home absolutely drained. That may have been the day they had to certify a death, the day they had to get a baby out of a dying woman, the day they held the hand of a dying child. You can’t just switch this off and mark the end of the office day with a cup of tea and forget about it until the next morning. Being a doctor or a nurse is more than that, and it consumes both your professional and your personal existence.

And anything who thinks that NHS workers are anything other than angels sent to care for us, are frankly, arseholes.

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