Meet our new Private GP, Dr Donna Hutchinson, MbChB MSc MRCGP

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We are delighted to welcome Dr Donna Hutchinson to our private GP team. Dr Hutchinson has over 26 years in medicine and provides clinics at Fitzwilliam Hospital on Friday Mornings. So, let’s find out more about Dr Hutchinson.

Dr Hutchinson’s career

Dr Donna Hutchinson decided on a career in medicine as a teen when she was seriously ill with an autoimmune illness. Against the odds, she qualified from Leicester University Medical School in 1996. The care she received for her own illness gave her a very good understanding of what it feels like as a patient and this has shaped her approach as a doctor.

After completing her medical degree and foundation years, Dr Hutchinson entered General Practice training where she did rotations in Rheumatology, Immunology, Renal Medicine, Psychiatry, Gastroenterology, Obstetrics and Gynaecology, Sexual Health and Palliative Medicine. 

In 2009, she completed a Master of Science degree at Nottingham University Medical School in Sports and Exercise Medicine and gained a distinction for her research on ‘Barriers to Physical Activity in both Health and Disease’.

Becoming a GP

Becoming a GP Partner at a large practice in Grantham for 20 years, Dr Hutchinson also assumed the additional roles of Safeguarding Lead, CQC Registered Manager and the lead for Musculoskeletal Medicine.

Dr Hutchinson now works as a locum, a digital GP for practices both locally and across England and pursues her continued studies in Mindbody medicine.

She is a HeartMath Registered Coach and Clinician and is trained in Neuroscience cognitive processing and autonomic regulation techniques for health and wellbeing.

Compassionate enquiry is the key to unlocking patient’s health stories

Dr Hutchinson feels honoured to have shared so many wonderful patient stories and healing journeys. She says: “They have taught me so much and I owe each and every one of them a huge debt of gratitude.” 

“What I have learnt is that compassionate enquiry seems to be the key to unlocking the story of someone’s health: why this illness?  why now?  what bodily symptoms and what can we do about them?” continues Dr Hutchinson.

Psychoneuroimmunology is her main area of interest

As well as being well-versed in all aspects of General Practice, Dr Hutchinson’s main area of interest is the science of psychoneuroimmunology. This is how all parts of the body and mind are in constant communication. She believes that we have more control over our emotions and physical health than we may think.

Healing is often possible and lots can be done, even if there isn’t a cure

Having worked with many patients with complex issues who have seen a doctor and been told ‘nothing can be done’ and they have to ‘live with it’, Dr Hutchinson feels that healing is often possible and lots can be done, even if there isn’t a cure. This can refer to a number of conditions including chronic pain, persistent fatigue, autoimmune illness, functional neurological disorder, anxiety, headache, and bowel disorders.    

A collaborative approach with patients

Dr Hutchinson says: “Our body is remarkable.  An intelligent, biological system capable of significant self-healing if supported in the right way. I most enjoy working collaboratively with patients who wish to be empowered to take charge of their health and wellbeing. They want to understand not only what is wrong with them but also be involved in shared decision-making about their treatment.”

Patients are their own experts and I help demystify their symptoms

“Each of us is the expert in ourselves. We know intuitively when something is not right, even if we lack the medical expertise or technical language to verbally express correctly what that is.

With my considerable years of experience and continuous medical training, I am able to demystify symptoms.  Sometimes this requires blood tests or imaging, which can be done onsite. I can then offer advice, treatment or refer on to a specialist colleague if that is more appropriate.”    

Private practice allows time and space to truly listen to patients

“Private practice allows me the time and the space to be fully present. By truly listening to patients, I understand what is most important to them and how I might help them attain their health goals.”

Each person’s healing journey is unique but a holistic approach to care that incorporates emotional, physical and mental health and accounts for individual core values is most likely to succeed.

Spare time activities

Dr Hutchinson lives locally and has tried her hand at traditional rock climbing, pack rafting, horse riding, cycling and skiing, often with limited success but she has a lot of fun trying!

How to book an appointment with Dr Hutchinson

Dr Hutchinson offers 20, 40 or 60-minute appointment slots on a Friday morning. To book an appointment with Dr Hutchinson, please call Fitzwilliam Hospital on 01733 842 304 or complete our online form.

Continued Learning

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