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At the heart of general practice since 1960

47. Dr Sam Everington

GP with strategic influence

Dr Sam Everington has more jobs than any regular individual will have in their lifetime, so it is little wonder he is able to exert some considerable influence.

The former national adviser on NHS England’s new general practice models of care now provides clinical leadership for the East London sustainability and transformation programme, while also holding the post of clinical lead at NHS Tower Hamlets CCG.

The half-Norwegian former barrister is also a champion for GP social prescribing, which he is working to spread across the UK and internationally. This year, he has hosted visits from health leaders of 23 nations as part of this endeavour.

He has also been pushing for newly qualified doctors to spend five years training in general practice and has persuaded NHS Digital leaders to set up a new service ensuring patients’ referrals are triaged correctly in complex cases.

The new Referral Assessment Service is aimed at situations where it is unclear whether a patient needs a consultant appointment or a diagnostic test. Dr Everington says it will ‘transform the care and experience of patients referred to outpatients’.

His work to transform outpatients will continue in the coming year, he says. He is working towards a bid to ‘reduce the need for patients to travel to hospital by 50%’ by bringing together immediate specialist advice and modern technologies ‘we use and take for granted in our private lives’.

He is also pushing for the right for junior doctors to train as GPs in one practice, close to ‘their families and roots’, rather than facing what he calls the ‘cruel’ system in which they can ‘potentially be allocated anywhere in the country by a computer’.

Why influential: Has lots of fingers in all types of pies

What others say: ‘Passionate, tenacious, nearly always positive’

Random fact: Used to do some embroidery in his spare time

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