Thursday, December 28, 2006

Multi-culturalism comes to France - French GPs get Diversity Training....

..... on how to deal with their English patients.

From the Times:

Dr Léopold, 54, is among a growing number of French GPs undertaking a training programme on how to treat the several hundred thousand Britons who have moved to France. The difficulties they face are as much cultural as linguistic.

The programme, funded by the French Federal Association for Medical Training, aims to bridge the linguistic and social gulf that often separates Gallic doctors from their English patients. Participants are given a list of English medical terms and mistakes to avoid, such as confusing the French groin (pig’s snout) with a groin strain, or pile (battery) with piles.

They are also warned about what Marc Bonnel, who runs the programme, describes as “cultural diversity”. “Basically, we have a totally different approach to medicine,” he said.

Consultations, for instance, tend to be longer in France — an average of fifteen minutes compared with seven in Britain

........Dr Bonnel also advises GPs to avoid asking British patients to use suppositories — a common form of medicine in France — and to be aware of what he calls la pruderie anglaise. “I would never hesitate to tell a French woman to take off her clothes on her first appointment, even if she had just come with a cold,” he said. “But you have to be very careful about that sort of thing with English women.”

Begun in 2000, the scheme is proving so popular that the number of courses will be doubled in many regions next year. The need is underlined by British expatriate websites, which contain dozens of messages from families seeking English-speaking doctors.

The courses come at a time when the French authorities are trying to attract doctors to rural areas where the population is rising, partly as a result of the British influx. The Allier council in central France, for instance, last week put up “wanted” posters offering medical students annual grants of up to €18,000 (£12,000) if they agree to practise there for at least six years after qualifying.

Dr Léopold is typical of the rural GPs that officials are trying to cultivate. He has a practice in the village of Le Lonzac in the Limousin region of central France, where he now counts ten British families among his patients. He said: “They tend to be more docile than the French, who are very demanding about when they want an appointment and what treatment they should get.”

I expect their equivalent of the Daily Mail is gearing up for a series of articles moaning "Diversity Training costs French taxpayer Millions of Euros", "But Why can't they Learn French" and "What's wrong with suppositories? When in France do as the French...."

Oh I forgot. They don't have a tabloid culture in France. Isn't that lucky?


sink sink socks said...
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Jose said...

I suppose French are doing that because they very much appreciate the British people, which I can assure you they do. I have had many connections with the French in my working time and know for certain that they are very much pro-Bitish. Even Napoleon and Hitler never attempted to invade Britain, despite the damage they caused her. Was there something tender inside them as far as Britain was concerned?