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Dr Jeffrey Shapiro:

Farewell and Thank You

In mid March I made the decision to take a few months leave of absence from my medical practice in Cheltenham.  The reason was twofold.  Firstly I had not had a holiday for two years and Frieda and I decided that we would like to take the car and drive North for the Winter (This was to prove impossible with the arrival of Covid 19).

 Secondly it was suggested to me that with the increasing problem with Covid19 it would be unsafe for me at my age to be exposed to the large number of people I was seeing each day. The plan was to make a decision in July as to when I would return to work.  The arrival of the second wave of infection really affected this decision.

I started general practice in Cheltenham in Autumn 1964 and now 56 years later because of the pandemic I must reluctantly hang up my stethoscope.

For many years I started seeing patients treating them for all their problems: general consulting, repairing skin damage, setting fractures, removing lumps and bumps, tonsils and adenoids, appendices and of course delivering well over a thousand babies.  Together with Dr. Richard Wrennall we performed operative gynaecology, Caesarean deliveries, repaired hernias, removed varicose veins and haemorrhoids, and other more minor surgery. Over the following years we were able to see the success of these procedures.

I would like publicly to thank Dick for over forty years of true medical partnership, with not one instance of a crossed word between us in all those years.

I would like to thank Dr. Peter Enten and my present colleagues both medical and reception staff at Southland Medical Centre for providing such a pleasant atmosphere in which I have been working for the last twenty years.

As time went on, so many of my patients became acquaintances I looked forward to seeing, and later after looking after many in many families, they became, at least in my eyes, friends.  There have been some families where I have looked after four generations.  There are some I have looked after for over fifty years.

I have been very grateful to have received the trust of so many. This has meant so much to me. I would like to thank you all for this – they know who they are. The continuity of such health management has made general practice so satisfying for me and it is with much sadness that I now need to say goodbye.

Jeffrey Shapiro

September 2020

Download a copy of the letter here.