GP becomes an NHS poster boy for wellbeing and prevention campaign

Dr Richard Pile on the poster PNL-151216-155537001
Dr Richard Pile on the poster PNL-151216-155537001

A GP who sits on the board of the Hemel-based Herts Valleys Clinical Commissioning Group is one of the faces of a national campaign run by the NHS that aims to keep people safe and well this winter.

Dr Richard Pile, of Parkbury House Surgery, St Albans, has been chosen to appear in a TV advertisement and on posters as part of the Stay Well This Winter campaign.

The TV advert promotes NHS 111, the number people should call when they have an urgent healthcare need but not a 999 emergency. Dr Pile was also chosen to appear in posters and leaflets that stress the need to stay well this winter, for example by having a flu vaccination.

Dr Pile said: “I was offered the opportunity to audition to be part of the campaign through the talent agency that my kids are signed up with. They were looking for NHS staff to take part. My wife volunteered me on Facebook and sent off my mugshot.

“Inexplicably, they still offered me an audition despite this and it all went from there.”

He added: “The parts of the campaign that I have been involved in focus on patients using NHS 111 to seek medical advice, rather than attending accident and emergency, as that is for the most serious and life-threatening conditions only. There are also important messages about staying warm, taking your medication as prescribed and havinga flu jab if you are eligible.

“I was delighted to be able to be part of the campaign as it is consistent with my roles as both a GP and commissioner, particularly as one of my responsibilities as a board member is leading on wellbeing and prevention.”