I’ve been doing some research into what people in Britain think of doctors, the ones who work in general practice – the first call for me medical care – and comparing this with the situation in a couple of the countries. I want to talk about the rationale behind what I decided to do.
Now I had to set up my programme of research in there different countries so I approached postgraduates in my field in overseas departments(Q31), contacting them by email, to organize things for men at their end. I thought I would have trouble recruiting help but in fact everyone was very willing and sometimes their tutors got involve too.
I had to give my helpers clear instructions about what kinds of sample population I wanted them to use. I decided that people hat people under 18 should be excluded because most of them are students or looking for their first job, and also I decided at this stage just to focus on men who were in employment(Q32), and set up something for people who didn’t have jobs and for employed women later on as separate investigation.
I specifically wanted to do a questionnaire, and interviews with a focus group. With the questionnaire, rather than limiting it to one specific point, I wanted to include as much variety as possible(Q33). I know questionnaire area very controlled way to do things but I thought I could do taped interviews later on to counteract the effects of this. And the focus group may also prove useful in future, by targeting subjects I can easily return to, as the participants tend to be more involved.
So I’m collating the results now. A the moment it looks as if, in the UK, despite the fact that newspaper continually report that people are unhappy with medical care, in fact it is mainly the third level of care, which takes place in hospitals, that they are worried about(Q34). Government reforms have been proposed at all levels and although their success is not guaranteed, long-term hospital care is in fact probably less of an issue than the media would have us believe. However, I’ve still got quite a bit lot of data to look at.
Certainly I will need to do more far-reaching research than I had anticipated in order to establish if people want extra medical staff invested in the community, or if they want care to revert to fewer, but larger, key medical units(Q35). The solution may well be something that can be easily implemented by those responsible in local government, with central government support of course.
This first stage has proved very valuable though. I was surprised by how willing most of the subjects were to get involved in the project – I had expected some unwillingness to answer questions honestly. But I was taken aback and rather concerned that something I thought I’d set up very well didn’t necessarily seem that way to everyone in my own department(Q36).
I thought you might also be interested in some of the problems I encountered in collecting my data. There were odd cases that threw me –one of the subjects who I had approached while he was out shopping in town, decided to pull out when it came to the second round (Q37). It was a shame as it was someone who I would to have interviewed more closely.
And one of the first-year studentsI interviewed wanted reassurance that no names would be traceable from the answers(Q38). I was so surprised, because they think nothing of telling you about surprised, because they think nothing of telling you about themselves and their opinions in seminar groups!
Then, one of the people that I work with got a bit funny. The questions were quite personal and one minute he said he’d do it, then the next day he wouldn’t, and in the end he did do it(Q39). It’s hard not to get angry in that situation but I tried to keep focused on the overall picture in order to stay calm.
The most bizarre case was a telephone interview I did with a teacher at a university in France. He answered all my questions in great detail – but then when I asked how much access he had to dangerous substances he wouldn’t tell me exactly what his work involved (Q40). It’s a real eye- opener…
Choose the correct letter, A, B or C. RESEARCH ON QUESTONS ABOUT DOCTORS
31. In order to set up her research programme, Shona got
A. advice form personal friends in other countries.
B. help from students in other countries.
C. information from her tutor’s contacts in other countries
32. What types of people were included in the research?
A. young people in their first job
B. men who were working
C. women who were unemployed
33. Shona says that in her questionnaire her aim was
A. to get a wide range of data.
B. to limit people’s responses.
C. to guide people people through interviews.
34. What do Shona’s initial results show about medical services in Britain?
A. Current concern are misrepresented by the press.
B. Finance issues are critical to the government.
C. Reforms within hospitals have been unsuccessful.
35. Shona needs to do further research in order to
A. present the government with the findings.
B. decide the level of extra funding needed.
C. indentify the preferences of the public.
36. Shona has learnt from the research project that
A. it is important to plan projects carefully.
B. people do not like answering questions.
C. colleagues do not always agree.
A. gave false data
B. decided to stop participating
C. refused to tell Shona about their job
D. kept changing their mind about participating
E. became every angry with Shona
F. was worried about confidentiality
People interviewed by Shona
37. a person interviewed in the street ……………………..
38. an undergraduate at the university …………………….
39. a colleague in her department ………………………..
40. a tutor in a foreign university ………………………..