Pepper Pig ‘encourages inappropriate use of primary care services’

Two of the three case studies listed resulted in an “urgent home visit”.

13 December 2017
Pepper Pig

The BMJ articles examine if Peppa Pig encourages the inappropriate use of GPs and primary care resources.

The British Medical Journal (BMJ) article examines the appropriate use of primary care services within the children’s TV show Pepper Pig – the research was conducted by, general practitioner, Dr Catherine Gray.


The article examines three separate case studies; an erythematous maculopapular facial rash, a 2-minute history of coryzal symptoms after playing outside without his rain hat and a 3-year-old pony who coughs three times while attending playgroup.

Two of the three case studies listed resulted in an “urgent home visit” and in all three case studies, Dr Brown Bear administered unspecified medication which resolved symptoms promptly.

It concludes that although Pepper Pig conveys many positive public health messages, encouraging healthy eating, exercise, and road safety – the show raises patient expectation and encourages inappropriate use of primary care services.

Dr Brown Bear was approached for his perspective as part of the research; however, he was unable to comment pending a fitness to practise investigation.


Every-year the BMJ releases a series of articles that are designed to take a light-hearted look at the issues healthcare professionals face. 

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