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Nation’s 50 most influential GPs celebrated in Pulse Power list

RCGP chair Dr Maureen Baker has been named the most influential GP in this year’s Pulse Power 50, after colleagues said she had been ‘proactive and inspiring’ in her work defending the profession.

Dr Baker topped the Pulse Power 50 list after an eventful year that saw her declare that general practice was ‘on the verge of extinction’ and lead the college’s public bid for a re-gearing of NHS funding to ensure a larger share of the cake for GPs.

The Power 50 list celebrates the most influential GPs in the UK today and was garnered from over 600 nominations from a panel of GP leaders and Pulse readers. Click here to see the full Power 50 list.

The fifth annual list of the 50 most influential GPs sees GPC chair Dr Chaand Nagpaul in second place, followed by Professor Gerada – described as a ‘rock star GP leader with wide appeal’.

There are 18 new entries on the list this year, with Tower Hamlets-based MPIG campaigner Dr Naomi Beer entering highest at number 14. Other newcomers include GP seven-day working champion Dr Ivan Benett at NHS Central Manchester CCG and Birmingham LMC medical secretary Dr Robert Morley.

Pulse has also included a new category honouring GPs making a difference in their local communities, which was topped by south London-based ‘old-school family doctor’ Dr Mark Ashworth.

GPs listed as ‘rising stars’ of the profession include Manchester LMC’s new honorary secretary Dr Tracey Vell, who strode into the limelight this year flying the flag of grassroots GPs, and Dr Chandra Kanneganti, the chair of the British International Doctors Association.

Pulse’s panel said that Dr Baker has ‘united groups in an effort to ensure the future of UK general practice’ and has been ‘proactive and inspiring so far, as well as being down to earth’.

In an interview with Pulse, she said that she had highlighted shortfall in GP funding because the public needed to know the real situation.

She said: ‘I do recognise that these are powerful statements and it does not paint a good picture of what’s going on in general practice, but I think we are holding up a mirror to general practice and showing things as they are.

‘I really do think that things will get better, but they will only get better if we collectively make them better. Just sitting on our hands waiting for things to get better is a recipe for disaster.’

Health secretary Jeremy Hunt tops Pulse’s list of the most influential names outside the profession, while new NHS England chief executive Simon Stevens takes the number two spot and BMA chair Dr Mark Porter completes the top three.

The Pulse Power 50 was based on over 600 nominations made by a panel of GP leaders – including Professor Gerada, NHS Alliance chair Dr Michael Dixon, longstanding GPC member Dr Nigel Watson and GPC Wales chair Dr Charlotte Jones – as well as more than 100 Pulse readers submitting nominations online. From these nominations, Pulse formulated the final list.

Pulse editor Nigel Praities said: ‘This list may be about celebrating outstanding individuals, but we are confident it also represents the astonishing diversity and breadth of those working in general practice. These lists are always an inexact science, but this year shows a broader range of ethnicities and more women than ever before. It is this that makes general practice strong, and long may it continue.

‘I am also delighted to include a “local GP heroes” category for the first time, because -let’s face it – it is the unsung jobbing GPs who are the real champions of the profession.’