Jeremy Bending is an internationally recognised authority on diabetes and its treatment. Having published more than 50 scientific papers in academic journals on the subject and founded an award-winning diabetes team and centre in Eastbourne, he was a consultant physician in diabetes and endocrinology there for 27 years, retiring eventually in 2014.
What is unusual about Jeremy is that whenever he was asked at a party what exactly does a physician do, he would simply reply: ‘I don’t cut anything out, or stick anything in for I am basically a listening doctor.’
When he came to see me with a view to publishing A LISTENING DOCTOR, I found myself unhesitatingly inclined to publish his new offering, for the man’s honesty and lack of pomposity were his most appealing characteristics. I was right, and the book is attracting rather splendid reviews.
Here is the latest review which I hope will convince our readers to acquire a copy of his splendid autobiography.
“Autobiographies by surgeons are quite common. In the last few years they have included a distinguished retired neurosurgeon, a young gynaecologist and a best seller, written by a young man who, disillusioned, gave up early in his career.
Physicians seem to be more reticent, so this interesting and well-written volume, by a recently retired physician who set up the diabetic unit at Eastbourne, is welcomed.
Dr Jeremy Bending qualified in medicine at the old Westminster Medical School (now part of Imperial College,
London) in 1974. He mentions that I was his Professor of Surgery at that time, but refrains from saying whether this was related to his choosing medicine rather than surgery for his future career. He received valuable experience working as a medical student in Accra, Ghana and later as a physician to isolated fishing communities in Newfoundland.
As a research fellow at Guy’s Hospital, London, he was involved in the early development of the insulin pump. In 1987 he was appointed consultant physician at Eastbourne with the remit to set up a specialized diabetic and endocrine service, retiring in 2014.
Dr Bending ranges over the changes, sadly not all for the better, that he has seen in the NHS, where the administration seems increasingly to impede rather than to catalyse the effective management of patients in the name of ‘ efficiency’. Nicely written and full of medical anecdotes, he stresses, in these days of high technology, the value of the physician being a ‘listening doctor’.
Harold Ellis, Guy’s and St Thomas’ Hospital, London”