33. Dr Preeti Shukla
Dr Preeti Shukla is a prime example of someone who, irrespective of the intricacies of the task, consistently stays at the top of their game.
GPs have Dr Shukla to thank in no great part for the new state-backed indemnity scheme. Without an official role within the BMA, she used her spirit and determination to put indemnity fees at the forefront of GPs’ minds.
She spoke with eloquence in conferences across the country about the damaging effect of spiralling indemnity fees, resulting in her letter to the health secretary signed by over 300 GPs.
This letter was helpful for the BMA’s GP Committee in negotiations to get an agreement on indemnity. The state-backed scheme has now removed the problems of massive increases in fees for GPs.
However, it is not perfect. There’s still ambiguity in what exactly it covers, and there has been some concern from partners that the whole of the funding for the scheme has come out of a potential global sum increase.
Luckily, Dr Shukla’s independence has enabled her to continually scrutinising the scheme – most recently raising the fact that the scheme remains at the discretion of the health secretary.
She remains unrelentingly determined to correct issues concerning international recruitment and female representation. Medically, one of her biggest interests is mental health – which leads to her supporting fellow doctors who encounter problems with theirs.
Dr Shukla now has a new role as the GPC's clinical and prescribing lead, which will no doubt propel her further into the limelight as she speaks out on some of the most serious issues affecting GPs' practice.
Why influential: Shining example of how grassroots can make senior figures sit up and take notice
What others say: ‘Actively participates and a very likeable GP in Blackburn with Darwen CCG’
Random fact: Describes her 10-year-old son as her ‘absolute rock’