Posted by: Witch Doctor | December 23, 2011

Christmas Treat : Maybe don’t tell them they’re fat after all!


In the last post, me and My Black Cat gave Her Majesty’s Government some good advice.

A Christmas tip to HMG : You could start off by introducing a clause into the HSCB that makes it illegal for the fattening foods and drinks industry to employ PR companies. Then you won’t have to employ them yourself at great cost to undo the work they have already done promoting crisps, fried chicken and the products of the company with the revolving door that beckons folk like Alan Milburn.”

So, instead of backscratching with the Chipping Norton set and risking vertigo with the revolving doors, and instead of dumping £1m of taxpayers money into what could turn out to be a black hole, here’s another witching idea:

Mr Cameron and Mr Lansley, The Witch doctor is absolutely certain that you have picked up on the fact that the majority of the population who develop Type 2 diabetes are overweight. Doubtless you are also well aware that they will be helped tremendously if they can decrease their weight. Similarly, preventing individuals becoming fat dramatically decreases the likelihood of them developing Type 2 diabetes through time.

Now, what do the pair of you think of this idea:

Insist that the walls in the waiting rooms of all GP surgeries are lined with sweets, chocolate biscuits, butter, ham, cookies, cup cakes, Christmas cakes – you know the kind of thing – oh, and of course, crisps and Pepsi.

And in the cold weather, how about nice hot, deep fried chicken in breadcrumbs or batter to warm the cockles, before the patients embark on the cold trip home.

Or, how about the wonderful deep-fried Mars Bars (a delicacy from the Oldest Sage Witch’s Highland Granny’s part of the world).

All for sale in the surgery waiting room…….


This would be a thoughtful thing to do.

After all, it would mean that the elderly and infirm and those patients with Type 2 diabetic, could stock up on their weekly shopping while waiting to see their doctor. These people spend a lot of time in their doctors’ surgeries not only when they are ill, but for the numerous little assessments that are a necessary part of payment by results.


Of course it is.

But that is more or less what is happening.

The small independent pharmacies are wilting, because all the Type 2 diabetics with a sweet tooth are homing in on the pharmacies hidden in the hinterland of the supermarket shelves.

Unlike Type 1 diabetics, most of those with Type 2 diabetes have this condition because they have a sweet tooth. They follow the carbohydrate trail. And often the fat trail too.

Some supermarkets know how to pander to these people. They place their pharmacy counter diagonally opposite the entrance. As the population become older and more infirm they have to shuffle to the other end of the store and back again to collect their prescriptions.

This could, of course, be due to thoughtfulness on the part of the supermarkets. The long walk keeps these customers painfully mobile. Even more thoughtful – these in-store pharmacies will supply over the counter paracetamol if requested, to give the patients some relief as they shuffle the long way back to the exit again.

Is it any wonder these Type 2 diabetics succumb to their sweet tooth by stopping for a rest at all the shelves that beckon to them, on their way in and out of the store.

Yes, let’s say the supermarkets are thoughtful.

Lets not say that they will have paid some marketing or PR guru to state the bleeding obvious – that placing the pharmacy at the furthest away point will boost profits.

No let’s not say that, My Black Cat. We’ll not go there. Others can.

Instead we’ll give some more free advice:

A Second Christmas tip to HMG : Ignore the “thoughtfulness” of the supermarket pharmacies. Introduce a clause into the HSCB that makes it illegal for supermarkets to have their pharmacies at the opposite end of the store. If supermarkets MUST have pharmacies, and we witches, can’t for the life of us see why they must, then they should be situated at the entrance to the store and the customers should not require to enter the store and sneak past the shelves and the checkout in order to enter and to exit.

So there you are – a meagre little Christmas present from a witch and a black cat. It is just some free, sensible, advice that will help you in your attempts to amend the Health and Social Care Bill.

But there are conditions attached to using this advice so freely given.

First you must remove the Clause that states the Secretary of State for Health will have a “duty to promote” and return to the original wording “duty to provide.” Clear, concise, wording that has served us well for decades.

After all, without this, we might find that supermarkets and PR companies and revolving doors are running our NHS and have full responsibility for its provision – just as they have for our grocery provisions.

And they might continue to thoughtfully provide exercise for the present or future Type 2 diabetics as they shuffle past the wonderful shelves dripping with carbohydrate and fat.

And that would never do.

Would it, My Black Cat?

And so, The Witch Doctor and My Black Cat wish David Cameron, Andrew Lansley, and all the Members of Parliament that we contacted personally in 2011, a very Happy Healthy Christmas and New Year when it comes.

In 2011, we wish that you all do the right and sensible thing regarding our NHS.

We wish all our readers (especially the seven – the magic number who see that the spell is working) a Happy, Healthy Christmas and New Year also.

But perhaps most of all, we wish our fellow medical bloggers, past, present and future, a Happy Healthy Christmas and New Year because without them, there would be no medical blogosphere, and the future healthcare in this country might be the worse for that.

The Witch Doctor – Link to a random page





© Dlundin |


  1. Reblogged this on Basil Wheel.

  2. Merry Christmas Witch Doctor.

    Anna :o]

  3. Merry Christmas WD. Had a chuckle at the deep fried Mars bars; Coatbridge claims the culinary crown for that particular invention.

  4. Merry Christmas to you too Anna and Julie. MBC thinks she will demand deep fried Mars Bar with her fish supper in 2012.

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