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British way of health.

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About this work


Outlines the work of the British Health Service through the eyes of Dr. Stone, a London G.P., Dr. Gibson, one-time Chairman of the British Medical Association, now a senior partner at Friarsgate Medical Centre, and Mr. Laing, Consultant Plastic Surgeon, who heads an ultra-modern hospital and research unit caring for burned patients. Film is aimed at overseas audiences.


UK : London Television Service, 1973.

Physical description

1 encoded moving image (27 min.) : sound, color



Copyright note

Crown copyright, managed by BFI.

Terms of use

Creative Commons Attribution-Non-Commercial-NoDerivs 2.0 UK: England & Wales

Language note

In English

Creator/production credits

Produced by London Television Service. Written and directed by Richard Marquand, edited by Richard Key, photographed by Ernest Vincze and sound by Peter Dodson.


This video was made from material preserved by the BFI National Archive.


Segment 1 Opening credits. Various aspects of the NHS are seen, from general practice to emergency services. The narrator describes how everything is paid for, so the patients do not have to worry about the cost of their treatments. Family doctor Dr Stone speaks about job satisfaction and how he regards being a GP as a good job. Time start: 00:00:00:00 Time end: 00:04:48:03 Length: 00:04:48:03
Segment 2 Family doctor Dr Stone is seen on a home visit in London. He visits a family with a baby. The city of Winchester is seen. The narrator says that there are 19 GPs, and 11 are based at a medical centre. The centre is shown, and one of the doctors, Dr Gibbs (one-time chair of the BMA) talks about the centre, what it does and why it is important. He has appointments with various patients, and the general work of the centre is seen.The centre's medical record room is shown. Dr Gibbs examines a pregnant woman. Time start: 00:04:48:03 Time end: 00:11:05:03 Length: 00:06:17:00
Segment 3 Dr Gibbs talks to the camera about the importance of community care. A home specially designed for the elderly is seen, and the narrator explains how the National Health Service tries to provide older people the means to live independently, instead of keeping them in institutions. A doctor visits a lady with hip trouble with a portable X-ray machine and takes an X-ray in her living room. Time start: 00:11:05:03 Time end: 00:16:16:20 Length: 00:05:11:17
Segment 4 In Salisbury, Dr James Laing is seen horse riding. The narrator explains that he works both in the NHS and in private practice. He says that he enjoys this way of life as it gives him more time to enjoy himself. In the NHS he heads an ultramodern burns unit, and he says that without the NHS, it would never have been built. He goes on a ward round to meet the child patients of the unit and speaks to a young girl whose nightgown caught fire. She has received a series of skin grafts. Time start: 00:16:16:20 Time end: 00:20:27:12 Length: 00:04:10:17
Segment 5 The three doctors talk about the negative aspects of the NHS, Dr Laing criticising the long waiting lists, Dr Gibbs suggesting that there are too few doctors, and Dr Stone saying it suffers from bureaucracy. However, they say that compared with the benefits, these downsides are small. Dr Laing operates on a young boy at the burns unit, and after the operation, speaks to him about the procedure. At the end of the film, the narrator says that only 2% of the UK population opt to pay for private healthcare, and the doctors are heard in voiceover expressing that the NHS is very humane. Time start: 00:20:27:12 Time end: 00:26:31:16 Length: 00:06:04:04



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