Much like our other page for the essential reading for those studying medicine, this page will discuss the materials that qualified doctors should be focusing on to keep their knowledge fresh, as well as having around for reference.

The books every qualified doctor should have

1) Gray’s Anatomy. Whilst it’s contested that this textbook is far too advanced for students (insofar as it resulting in a students version being made), GA is undoubtedly the most important textbook for practising doctors, and especially surgeons. It covers anatomy in such an in-depth and excellent level that this should be on the bookshelf of every doctor, whether you’re a General Practitioner or you’re a surgeon.

2) The whole reading list for medical students. It may seem strange that we’re suggesting that a qualified doctor has a reading list that has a whole list of books that medical students would use. However, this is the foundation of your career and it must never be forgotten and as such we highly recommend that all qualified doctors keep themselves clued up on the basics of medicine, even if it’s just for a quick reference.

3) The Lancet. This medical journal is one of the most highly thought of in the industry given its high impact factor. It covers some many different medical disciplines from neurology, to cardiology and oncology in such a detailed manner that it’s generally not recommend for students due to its complexity. By keeping up to date with the latest discoveries in medicine through the Lancet, its subsidising your continual professional development and gives you a heads up on the latest medical trends.

4) Patient case notes.This may seem like a strange one, but reviewing your patients case notes is an excellent way to learn more information not only about them, but by medicine in general. This is something you don’t usually have access to when you’re studying to be a doctor. However, as any doctor will attest, there’s no such thing as a reference patient. Therefore, by reading up on their case notes you’ll be able to learn more about the intricacies of certain diseases. You’d be surprised how the presentation of an illness varies from one patient to another in the same ward.


Of course, this list is by no means extensive and we would always recommend that you read as many books and articles as possible. However, if you’re a newly qualified doctor then the four suggestions above are a great start to your career.