31. Dr Naomi Beer
Fearless GP campaigner
Dr Naomi Beer is at the forefront of a band of fearless east London GPs battling to save their practices from the withdrawal of MPIG.
And her sophisticated ‘Save Our Surgeries’ campaign, co-founded with practice manager Virginia Patania, achieved impressive national attention and appeared to have scored a major victory last August after NHS England promised emergency funding.
But Pulse later revealed that only 15 of the 98 practices across the country most affected by the MPIG withdrawal were eligible for the fund, leading to the GPC calling the deal ‘a mockery’.
It was a real slap in the face for the campaign, even though Dr Beer’s own practice was eligible for funding. And so it means that for Dr Beer the fight continues.
This year she spoke just before NHS England chief executive Simon Stevens at the RCGP conference and challenged him to find better value anywhere than UK general practice. She also spoke at the LMCs conference for the first time and put NHS England on the spot yet again at a roundtable organised by Pulse as part of its Stop Practice Closures campaign.
Dr Beer’s candour and her unwillingness to lie down and take the beating that managers want to dish out make her an inspiration for many who are in a similar position.
She says: ‘Collectively, we have achieved the ear of the Government and NHS England. It takes time to get changes but they are coming.’