15. Dr Michael Dixon
The GP cheerleader
Described by our panel as ‘surely the best connected bow tie wearer yet to practice medicine’ Dr Michael Dixon is ranked among the top 20 most influential GPs for the third year running.
This year, in addition to his roles chairing the NHS Alliance and the council of the College of Medicine, he has helped create NHS Clinical Commissioners, the membership organisation for GP commissioners of which he is president, which he says attracted 70% membership among CCGs within three months of forming and ‘feels like a real force’.
Dr Dixon supported the Government’s plans to hand GPs secondary care commissioning budgets from the start and is now urging ministers to give them the budgets for primary care as well.
A long-term opponent of the centralism that characterised the Department of Health - and now NHS England - Dr Dixon has been an enthusiastic proponent of a local, GP-led approach to healthcare.
He says: ‘I see primary care really taking a lead in the coming year. I think we can finally achieve the primary care-led NHS that has never really happened so far.’
Ever the optimist, Dr Dixon’s says he is kept going by being surrounded by ‘so many brilliant people in my practice and in the organisations I work with’.
He says to younger GPs that they should seize the chance to enter the profession: ‘We’re entering the most exciting phase yet.’