Women in general practice | Leadership: Robert MacGibbon

May 19, 05:13 PM

Robert MacGibbon discusses Iona Heath


Image credit:  Lotte Therese Newman, Christian Furr, 1997, RCGP collection/Tamás Kolóti Photography 

Another person:  Iona Heath. I did know Iona Heath, because she was a partner in the Kentish Town Health Centre with the Caversham Group Practice, so I knew of her.  She was a bit younger than me, and very popular doctor, and everything.  I remember when she took the membership exam, she was eight months pregnant, and came top in the country.  That was somewhere in the sixties or seventies.  Yes, so there you are, so there!  Anyway, obviously a very impressive person, woman and doctor and everything, and when I was helping to organise but actually, kind of leading on it, the ’99 conference, I went to Aberdeen I think it was – the year before, just to see what it was like having these big conferences – and she was there, and I went up to Iona.  I said, ‘You’re going to come and do, I think it’s the Pickles lecture, the major lecture once a year, at our conference next year,’ and she said, ‘Oh, come on, you must be joking.’ Anyway, she did, I’m glad to say – I went back to my board and they said, ‘Yeah, we’ve got to have Iona Heath.’  She was the first woman to do it – in ’99, as late as that.  
Please note that the views expressed in these recordings are those of the interviewees, within their historical context, and may not represent RCGP views or policy.