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The Hands-on Guide for Junior Doctors, 3rd Edition

ISBN: 978-1-4443-1284-3
296 pages
April 2009, Wiley-Blackwell
The Hands-on Guide for Junior Doctors, 3rd Edition (1444312847) cover image
Part of the Blackwell foundation programme collection

The Hands-on Guide for Junior Doctors is a practical book for junior doctors and medical students making the transition from medical school to life on the wards. It contains new material to reflect the changes in PRHO training and the development of foundation programmes.

This book tells you how to prepare for the actual daily rigours of hospital life and is an essential guide for surviving your first year as a junior doctor.

It covers the personal aspects of being a doctor, outlining the realities of ward life including paperwork, self-care and guidance sections on arranging your finances and organising the next job.

It also provides the day-to-day reality of clinical life such as responding to acute emergencies, common ward calls, drug prescribing and carrying out practical procedures.

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1. Starting up.

2. Getting organized (the folder).

3. Paperwork.

4. Accident and emergency.

5. Becoming a better doctor.

6. Cardiac arrests and crash calls.

7. Common calls.

8. Death and dying.

9. Drugs.

10. Handle with care.

11. Approach to the medical patient.

12. Pain.

13. Practical procedures.

14. Radiology.

15. Surgery.

16. Obstetrics and Gynaecology.

17. General practice.

18. Self care.

Appendix A: Useful tests, numbers and other information.

Appendix B: Diagrams for explaining procedures to patients

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Anna Donald, is CEO, Bazian Ltd and Clinical Lecturer, School of Public Policy, UCL. She is also Kennedy Fellow, Harvard University


Mike Stein is Project Director, Medic-to-Medic, Royal Free Hospital


James Teo is a prize-winning final year student at Royal Free Medical School, who will be commencing his first PRHO job in August 2004.

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Part of the Blackwell foundation programme collection



  • New material reflects the changes in PRHO training and development of foundation programmes
  • Contains a second colour to present topic clearly
  • Provides procedures and protocols for dealing with common and acute diseases
  • Outlines the realities of ward life including paperwork, self-care and common ward calls
  • Provides guidance sections on arranging your finances and organising the next job
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Reviews of the current edition

"I would recommend this book to senior medical students and doctors in their foundation years. it is an excellent small but comprehensive text." Foundation Programme Director, Cheltenham General Hospital

"The book provides incredibly useful and easy to follow advice for a great majority of the day to day situations you will find yourself in as a PRHO. It will prove a great help when getting to grip with the job in the first few months, and well worth storing in the locker for the morning after pay day party. Summary: Well worth a butchers" Black Bag, Bristol University Medical School Gazette

"This book is one of the most useful things to have stashed in your pocket for your shadowing period and F1 year so why not get it now and have some use of it while you're a student?" Rectum, Leeds Medical School Magazine

"This pocket handbook is not only a delight to look at with its colourful cover, it is amazingly concise. It begins with an explanation for the fresh faced F1 about what to wear from day one, leading confidently through to practical procedures and common calls. It collates the information about the practicalities of the FY1 that one is expected to acquire from medical school in one small book." QMM Magazine, Birmingham University

Pre publication reviews of the 3rd Edition

"The content within the book is extremely relevant...the Hands on Guide continues to be a valuable resource for PRHO." SHO Somerset & Taunton

"The text is very user friendly. Information is easy to find, and extract. The illustrations are most informative, and the chapters appear in a logical order and are well structured." SHO Nottingham

Published Reviews of the 2nd Edition

"It is exactly what it says: a practical, no-nosense, hands-on guide to real life as a PRHO. ….Basically, its all the information we should have acquired during medical school but rarely have all in one place as we place so much emphasis on book learning and little on the practicalities of daily life as a PRHO." Northwing, vol.67, no.2, Autumn/Winter 2002

Published Reviews of the 1st Edition

This book is as essential as the Oxford Handbook or the BNF, to put it mildly "the best thing since sliced bread" St. Thomas' Medical Gazette

"This wonderful book contains all you need to know to get through your house jobs..... it has priority in my already laden white coat over the Oxford Handbook." 2nd Opinion

"I'd advise everyone to get this book as an accompaniment to your Oxford Handbook of Clinical Medicine." Sphincter

"It is very well written, beautifully laid out and extremely practical." Dr Tony Hope, Director of Ethox, Institute of Health Sciences, Oxford

"This book is as essential as the Oxford Handbook or the BNF, to put it mildly 'the best thing since sliced bread'." St. Thomas' Medical Gazette

"Invaluable for HOs but more than useful for 5th year medical students and SHOs too!" Southampton Health Journal

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