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GPs recognised in Queen’s birthday honours


A number of GPs have been recognised in this year’s Queen’s birthday honours list, including one who led reforms to reporting deaths in the aftermath of the Harold Shipman murders.

Dr Raj Patel, a GP based in Tameside and deputy national medical director for primary care at NHS England, has been given an MBE for services in healthcare.

He led changes to the reporting of deaths and incidents related to controlled drugs as part of efforts to rebuild the public’s trust in the medical profession following the murders committed by Mr Shipman.

Dr Patel and colleagues changed their practice in completing cremation forms so that a second doctor contacts relatives if they have concerns. With his encouragement, doctors across Manchester adopted the same rules and in 2008 questioning relatives became standard procedure.

Dr Patel also led the development of tool for reporting controlled drugs incidents in the wider Manchester area, acknowledging how Mr Shipman had used diamorphine during his crimes. This tool has since been adopted across 90% of England. 

Dr Patel told Pulse: ‘I am surprised, astonished and humbled to have received the honour.

This sort of recognition reflects the great teams and colleagues I have the privilege of working with in my practice, The Brooke Surgery, Hyde, and in NHS England & NHS Improvement – my heartfelt thanks to them.’

Other GPs that have been recognised include former BMA Scotland GP Comittee chair Dr Alan McDevitt, who was honoured with a CBE.

Dr McDevitt, who is also chair of Glasgow LMC and partner at The Green Medical Practice in Clydebank, was recognised for services to the NHS and general practitioners in Scotland. Last year he was recognised in Pulse’s annual Power 50 list of the UK’s most influential GPs.

BMA Scotland chair Dr Lewis Morrison said to Pulse: ‘It is really great news to see Alan’s immense personal contribution to the future of primary care recognised in this way.

‘The legacy of his substantial work – which is the result of tireless dedication and considerable personal sacrifice – is a brighter future for primary care in Scotland.

‘That will be of huge benefit, not just for doctors, but perhaps more importantly, the patients who depend on their care.’

In Gibraltar, Dr Rene Arthur Beguelin has been appointed an OBE for services to health in the area, where he has worked as a GP for almost 40 years.

Meanwhile, the chair of the National Association of Primary Care (NAPC), Dr Navnit Singh Chana, was awarded an MBE for services to clinical education and primary and community care.

Chief executive of NAPC John Pope said: ‘Nav’s award is a testament to his hard work and dedication to NAPC’s mission to transform primary care.’

Joining him in receiving an MBE is Dr Gulbash Singh Chandok, a senior partner at Guru Nanak Medical Centre in Southall, west London, for services to general practice.

Dr Frederick John Hall from Bromsgrove, Worcestershire, has gained an MBE for voluntary services to armed forces medical training, and Wolverhampton CCG’s clinical accountable officer, Dr Helen Hibbs, achieved hers for services to NHS leadership.

Dr Sivaramkrishnan Devaraj received a British Empire Medal for voluntary services to healthcare charity fundraising and general practice in London, and elsewhere, Professor Jason Leitch, a board member of the Medical and Dental Defence Union of Scotland (MDDUS), has been awarded a CBE.