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Published: 10 January 2022

St George’s Medicine alumna and Chair of the Academy of Medical Royal Colleges, Professor Helen Stokes-Lampard, has been awarded a damehood in in this year’s New Year’s Honours for services to General Practice.

Overwhelmed and humbled

Professor Stokes-Lampard says of her award: “I was completely overwhelmed and humbled to hear of this honour, which is a reflection of the amazing teams I work with. They have all worked tirelessly throughout this pandemic and given their heart and soul for the patients and communities they serve.” 

“I am so grateful to have had the opportunities to work as a frontline GP, a university academic and to be elected to chair national medical organisations whilst having the unstinting support of my wonderful husband and family throughout.”

She also tweeted about the experience: “I am completely blown away and humbled by this, any award is due to all our amazing NHS teams in this pandemic. Thank you to my amazing colleagues.” 

Career journey

Professor Stokes-Lampard qualified in Medicine from St George’s in 1996 – where she was taught by fellow alumnus and recent recipient of the Order of the Bath, Sir Patrick Vallance. 

Having initially contemplated a career in obstetrics and gynaecology, she undertook a conversion to academic primary care and joined the University of Birmingham in 2000 as an academic GP registrar.  

She has since undertaken a number of national positions of responsibility, including the National Exceptional Pressures Panel, the NHS England Net Zero Panel and the NHS England Assembly.

In 2011, Professor Stokes-Lampard became the first female Treasurer of the Royal College of General Practitioners before serving as their Chair from 2016 to 2019.

During this time, she achieved notable success in rebuilding high level alliances as well as nurturing others, positively influencing policy around the NHS Long Term Plan and subsequent GP Contract in England. 

Speaking about what she enjoys about her different roles, Professor Stokes-Lampard says:

“I most enjoy my interactions with the people, from seeing patients and clinical or academic colleagues, to the hugely diverse range of people I encounter in government, politics and health policy."

Learnings from St George's

Reflecting on how St George’s has shaped her career, she adds:

“St George’s is really special - the experiences, ethos, values and the sense of community I experienced as a student at St George’s still sustain me."

"Every university in the UK is special and will give you a high-quality degree, but some add so much more.” 

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