A DOCTOR who worked as a GP in Chard for more than two decades has launched a new book sharing knowledge and common sense on health and human beings.

Dr Andrew Tresidder practised for 23 years at what is now called the Springmead Surgery.

He said: “I was privileged to be a GP in Chard from 1989 until 2013 and learnt a great deal of common sense about health from the people of Chard whilst there, as well as from colleagues and other NHS staff, and complementary therapists.

“The book is a compilation of common sense about health and people, learnt in my time as a GP, and is written for everyone.

“A few small parts of it are specifically aimed at doctor, however it really is for everyone who is interested in health.

“It aims to interest, inform, provoke curiosity, and help us think outside the box on some important areas.”

Dr Tresidder grew up in Drayton, near Langport, until the age of 21 when he was in London at Guy’s Hospital.

He returned to Somerset as a junior doctor in 1983, before becoming a GP.

Andrew added: “In 1989 we were two practices in Chard; Essex House with five GPs, and Drs Glanvill and Ferris, whom I joined to make three GPs.

“Each practice looked after all its patients day and night, so it was a privilege to get to know people and see them in their own homes, often sending them into hospital from there.

“Our wives couldnt go out when we were on call, because they had to man the phones, whilst we used to say where we were going so that our wives could phone a give us the message.

“Chard Hospital was in full swing with 44 beds.”

Things have changed quite a bit since then.

“We now have three practices and more GPs, many more patients, and much busier - whilst Chard Hospital sadly has no inpatient beds at present,” Dr Tresidder said.

“It would be impossible for local GPs now to look after nights and weekends, because of the sheer volume of work.

“This is not meant to sound a sob story, but many GPs work 13 or 14 hour days, which is unsustainable long term, one of the reasons I have chosen to write about health for everyone.

“The healthier we are, the less likely we are to become ill. Part of the reason GPs are so busy is that hospitals still look after the very ill, but many people are discharged home early - but with no extra medical resources to look after them at home.

“Also, a lot of conditions which used to be looked after in hospital outpatients have been passed to the GP. In fact, wherever there is a gap in the system, or you are ‘not ill enough’ to be referred, the GP is expected to fill the gap.”

Dr Tresidder will be launching his new book, Health & Self Care for Health professionals, with a signing at Chard Bookshop.

He will be in from 10am until 11am on November 10.