Acronyms aside, I've got great idea for next series of Line of Duty
- Credit: PA
I’ve never taken diazepam (Valium) or any other tranquilliser but if I’d had any in the house I might have reached for the packet when watching the latest series of TV's Line of Duty.
Having worked with the police throughout my career, was any of it accurate?
The police love acronyms. Any relevant medical details from the PNC (police national computer) would be passed to me as the FME (forensic medical examiner) working with my HCP (health care professional) colleagues under PACE (the Police and Criminal Evidence Act 1984 code C). It all sounds a bit DI Arnott.
But the NHS is no better. We love acronyms. We need a CT scan, MRI, ECG and a D Dimer test to check for a PE.
In anatomy we have ASIS (anterior superior iliac spine – or the front bit of the pelvis). Diseases can be MS (multiple sclerosis), MI (myocardial infarct or heart attack) or DVT (deep venous thrombosis).
We even use acronyms for non-medical terms. DNA is not only the genetic code but also 'did not attend'. Perhaps when someone comes from a whole family who never turn up we could argue that DNA is in their DNA.
NAD means 'no abnormality detected' although when one junior doctor commented that the test was 'NAD', the consultant asked whether this meant 'not actually done'.
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The main role of AC-12 in Line of Duty is not inventing acronyms but catching 'bent coppers'.
Superintendent Hastings is impressive but then he had a great training. In his younger days, as Captain Hastings, he was the assistant to Hercule Poirot.
I’m not always innocent. I could have been inadvertently involved in a fraud.
When I was a GP we had to check all our patients. We found a registered patient who was 110 and lived in a block of flats that had been demolished ten years earlier. But there were also patients we had been looking after for years who had never been officially registered.
I suspect that any money paid to us for looking after the non-existent 110 year old was balanced by the money we were not paid for the unregistered patients we were looking after. Not a serious case for AC-12.
I was never in the pocket of an OCGs (organised crime gangs). My evidence: I drive a five-year-old Honda Jazz. If AC-12 searched my laptop they would find completely disorganised photos and old columns for Torbay Weekly. I rest my case.
Whenever someone is sent to prison in Line of Duty, corrupt prison officers either beat them up or garrotte them. This was not an everyday occurrence when I ran GP surgeries in prisons.
Later on I was asked to join the independent team who review deaths in custody. I hope we would have noticed if the person had been garrotted from behind. Most deaths in prisons are natural causes. Many of the elderly men convicted of historical abuse have the 'normal' diseases of old age.
But I must confess to some corruption.
In the fridge of the custody centre in the police station were sandwiches meant for the prisoners. At the end of a shift they would be thrown away.
I must admit that I did eat the occasional ham sandwich. Sometimes even cheese. We then received a stern message from HQ telling us that eating sandwiches meant for prisoners is 'low-level corruption'.
Would AC-12 think I was in a pickle with my cheese sandwich? Under questioning I’d probably just say 'no comment' or 'is there any mustard?'
Was Superintendent Hastings about to appear, head in hands saying: “Mother of God I hate bent coppers and doctors eating sandwiches”. Hopefully I’d be saved by a cover up.
Had the chief constable or the Police and Crime Commissioner also been eating sandwiches meant for prisoners? Here’s a whole new series for season seven, I’ll ring Jed Mercurio.