The Secret Doctor was a new kind of blog for us.
Three and a half years ago we set out to find a junior doctor who would write unflinchingly about their experiences on the wards – their triumphs and frustrations, what they learned and what they’d rather forget.
The ‘secret’ bit wasn’t new – there is a long tradition of medical writers using anonymity to speak a little more freely about their work. What was new, for us, was having a writer you could communicate with, through social media. With this kind of writing, there is often an implicit question: ‘What would you have done in this situation?’ Now, you had the chance to say, and they had the chance to answer back.
We’ve notched up 660,000 page views so far, and the Secret Doctor blogs feature amongst our best-read editorial content, while hundreds of doctors have engaged with the content on social media. You can read the posts online.
Our first Secret Doctor wrote 100 articles over two years. The second, Aoife Abbey, chose to unveil herself after being approached by a major publisher to write a book based on her experiences. And now we have a third, who I feel confident will continue the great success of the blog. Look out for the first piece on Friday.
Neil Hallows is the BMA’s content editor