Table 1.

Personal perspectives

Jenny VaughanJulia Simons
As a senior consultant, with a history of recent treatment for solid organ cancer, including chemotherapy, I have felt guilty that I cannot directly care for COVID-19 patients and that others have taken that risk. Instead I have worked with various organisations to improve supplies of personal protective equipment and supported my colleagues on the frontline. My husband is a general surgeon who is exposed to COVID-19 on a daily basis but he has observed careful decontamination procedures at home. Remote consulting means than clinical assessment is more challenging, but video access still allows useful examination and observation. I rebook patients for a face-to-face meeting if required at the appropriate time or refer to a colleague if it is urgent. I ensure that my patients are aware of and are following COVID-19 government advice, especially the ones in vulnerable groups.My final objective structured clinical examinations were cancelled and I have graduated early via email. The loss of the normal rites of passage, finals and graduation add to a sense of imposter syndrome. I'm glad we are being given the opportunity to volunteer as foundation interim year-1s. I am concerned that the final few months of preparation have been lost in exchange for starting work in a pandemic. As the newest doctors, I think it's important to recognise that, while the circumstances we are starting in are not those we ever imagined, the expectations of us are the same as if we were starting work as previously planned in August. There is comfort knowing I will be expected to work within my competence and that measures have been put in place specifically to support us. I also have concerns about whether adequate protection and support will be available in practice.