A cup of tea with Dr Hilary Jones

Here at Manuka Doctor we’re proud to be supported by a range of experts from different fields.

One of our long-standing experts is broadcaster Dr Hilary Jones who has just published his latest novel called Frontline.

Hilary took some time out of his busy schedule to conduct a quick Q&A for our website, talking about his love of honey, working during the pandemic, and how he became the GP millions wake up to every morning.

On his career

As a boy Hilary attended Latymer Upper School on the banks of the River Thames before qualifying as a medical doctor at the Royal Free Hospital in Hampstead in 1976.

He held various positions in the medical sector including being the only medical officer on Tristan da Cunha, a group of islands in the South Atlantic, back in 1978.

As his father was also an NHS GP it made sense that Hilary would also follow in his footsteps. Upon his return to the UK, Dr Hilary became a junior doctor at Basingstoke Hospital and from 1982 onwards, a full-time GP in the Basingstoke area. Five years later in he was promoted to a GP Trainer.

Dr Hilary got his first TV role with GMTV in 1989, becoming the Health and Medical Advisor from 1993 onwards. He was responsible for reporting on emerging medical stories as well as informing viewers about common medical problems and he has continued to perform these duties ever since.

When GMTV was replaced by Daybreak and Lorraine in 2010 Hilary remained a core part of the broadcast team, and in turn when Daybreak became Good Morning Britain, or GMB, in 2014 where it remains on ITV every weekday.

His role became even more crucial in recent times with the emergence of the coronavirus pandemic, when he appeared on the show every morning to keep the public updated with the latest medical advice.

On working through the pandemic

MDR – Hi Hilary, and thanks for taking the time to talk to us, I know you are very in demand at the moment!

Dr HJ – Yes it has been a busy time, but feels more important than ever to keep everyone up to date with public health developments.

MDR – It must have been a change to write a novel?

Dr HJ – Yes, it was a big departure for me. When you do a lot of medical writing as I do, writing fiction was actually a good break for me, especially the dialogue parts. It was nice to explore some other human themes alongside medicine like romance and overcoming adversity. My Grandfather fought in the first world war so I have links to that period in time too.

MDR – Where are we at now with the pandemic?

Dr HJ – Well, science tells us we are going to see more cases. But hopefully that won’t be translated into the many more hospital cases and deaths we have seen in previous spikes. With the help of the vaccines we will learn to live with a certain number of cases and many experts hope that things will get back to some sort of normality by the middle of next year.

MDR – Finally, thanks for the monthly blog you have been writing for our website to keep readers up to date. We know you are a big fan of Manuka honey, but which one is your favourite?

Dr HJ – Yes, I have been a fan of honey and Manuka honey for many years. It is one of nature’s oldest natural remedies. I always encourage people to do their research and buy a brand that is tested and certified like Manuka Doctor is. As for my favourite, I think my 94 year old Mum took my last few jars so you would have to ask her for her favourite!

Next time we will Hilary, thanks for your time.

Frontline, by Dr Hilary Jones is out now.

You can read more of Dr Hilary’s blogs here