20130210 (RS)

Susan Calman finds out if her obsession with Casualty would make her any good as a doctor.


It's the call you hope never to hear on a flight or a train "is there a doctor on board"? Unless of course you're Susan Calman because despite feeling distinctly queasy at the sight of blood Susan believes she's seen enough medical dramas on TV to diagnose at least as well as Hugh Laurie's character House.

The delusion comes from Susan's complete obsession with long running medical drama Casualty. She has them all recorded and watches them over and over again. She'll occasionally broaden her medical training by watching the GP based soap 'Doctors' but it's in the frantic atmosphere of accident and emergency she believes her latent powers to heal would lie.

Of course in the real world she wouldn't be able to safely diagnose an ingrowing toenail. But it's the extent that producers go to to make medical dramas realistic that Susan will really be exploring in this programme.

She visits the set of her beloved Casualty to spend the day with A&E consultant and the medical advisor on the show Pete Salt. She'll find out about his role and just how much real medicine finds its way into the story.

She then pops across town to the surgery of Dr Phil Hammond to get his take on medical dramas and how he believes that while the medicine might be accurate it's the portrayal of doctors as real human beings that stretches credulity.

Armed with her day on set and her years of experience standing at the bedside (albeit on the other side of the tv screen) Susan will finally put her medical powers to the test. She'll join medical students from the University of Glasgow as they attempt to diagnose the problems of simulated patients.