The British Medical Association has announced its latest council chair.
Chaand Nagpaul, currently chair of the BMA’s GP committee, has been appointed as the organisation’s new overall leader.
Nagpaul is a hugely respected individual in the NHS, and will take up the role on 29th June.
He will replace current chair Mark Porter, who had been chair since 2012.
His recent years dominated by the negotiations and dispute over the junior doctors contract, with Porter often required to comment publicly on the matter.
Dr Nagpaul has been chair of the GPC since 2013, and has been a practicing GP for over 27 years.
In a statement, the incumbent reflected on the importance of the position.
“It is a tremendous privilege and honour to represent the medical profession as BMA council chair. The challenges facing doctors and the health service in which we work have never been greater. Doctors are at the sharp end of chronic underfunding, staff shortages and rising demand on the NHS, and see firsthand the devastating impact these pressures have on patient care.”
Nagpaul also outlined his commitment to the new role.
”I will work to ensure that the BMA supports doctors facing these pressures, and will lead the charge for an NHS that is properly resourced by the next Government, so that doctors can provide the safe, high-quality care patients deserve.”
Nagpaul commenced medical undergraduate studies in October 1979 at The Medical College of St. Bartholomew’s Hospital (as it was known then), now part of Queen Mary, University of London, qualifying with M.B.,B.S.(Lon.), degrees in 1985 with full registration with GMC in 1986.
He has been a general practitioner in Stanmore since 1990.
In a strongly-worded speech at the 2017 LMC conference in Edinburgh, Nagpaul accused politicians of “callous disregard” for the NHS, and urged patients to vote for a party that will give the health service the funding it needs.
Nagpaul concluded his speech by calling on the healthcare profession to ensure that the well-publicised funding gap is plugged.
“We must therefore resurrect our Darwinian survival instinct, and stake our claim with our patients and the public to demand that the general election delivers a government that will fund the NHS properly – to plug the £10b gap compared to our European counterparts – and give general practice the resources to do justice to our profession, our discipline and the patients we care for.”
This hardline approach would be welcomed by most healthcare professionals once Nagpaul takes up this new post.