In praise of ... Sir Liam Donaldson
Appointed in 1998, he has played a major role in campaigns that are now playing a crucial part in improving the health of the nation.(sic) The ban on smoking in public places owed much to his energetic support against government opposition, and although he has been criticised for over-reacting to the swine flu threat, Britain's preparations for what might have been a lethal epidemic are internationally admired. His most spectacular failure was the attempt to introduce a new application system for junior doctors, but he has opened an important new front against alcohol abuse by demanding a minimum unit price – dismissed by Gordon Brown – and his proposal for presumed consent for organ transport remains the most persuasive way of meeting the shortage. His successor must match his independence and imagination.Thank you, Sir Liam, and goodnight!