The Royal College of General Practitioners Northern Ireland (RCGPNI) hosted its ‘New Members’, Fellows’ and Awards Ceremony’ in the Hilton Hotel, Templepatrick, at the weekend.
The event provided general practice with one of the few opportunities to welcome newly trained GPs to the profession and reflect on the contribution that GPs make to both individuals and communities.
The most prestigious award presented on the day was for General Practitioner of the Year, a patient nominated award. The Chair of RCGPNI, Dr John O’Kelly, said that it was incredibly gratifying to read patient testimonials about their GPs from across the region, adding that it testified to the quality of care which GPs delivered for their patients. It was presented to Dr Shauna Fannin from the Ballymoney Health Centre, Ballymoney.
One of the nominating patients said: “Dr Fannin goes over and above the care of duty for many people. She is very thorough and very attentive at all times. She treats you with a warmth and dignity and a listening ear. She never treats you as just another patient number. She is the most supportive doctor in all health issues, this world and health service could do with many more like her.”
Commenting on the award, Dr Fannin said: “I feel very honoured to receive this prestigious award from the RCGP and would like to thank sincerely the patients of my practice who nominated me. This award was a beautiful surprise but I want to say it has been my privilege to be their GP and their recognition is truly humbling.
“I have been a GP for over 25 years and I still believe it is the best job in the world. When I look back to what drew me to general practice as a career it was that long term relationship based on trust with patients, families and a local community which was most important to me.
“Despite all the pressures of the job, being able to help, care, treat and support people at every stage of their lives remains, to me, both inspiring and motivating. Lastly, the people of Ballymoney and the locality, are some of the kindest, most generous people on the planet and I am very proud to be a family doctor who continues to serves that community.”
A number of new members and Fellows were also welcomed at the event. New members have completed their GP training and entered in to membership of the College. Fellowship is the highest accolade the RCGP can bestow and it is for services to medicine, particularly general practice.