Former BGS President elected President of the Royal College of Physicians

14 April 2022

The BGS is delighted to learn that one of its past Presidents, Professor David Oliver, has been elected as the new President of the Royal College of Physicians (RCP) London.

David served as BGS President from 2014-2016 and previously also held the position of BGS Honorary Secretary. David is the first geriatrician to hold the office of RCP London President, winning a close-run election in a strong field of candidates.
As a practising geriatrician who has served as National Clinical Director for Older People and has sat on the Boards of organisations such as the King’s Fund and the Nuffield Trust in addition to his BGS roles, David is well-equipped to take on this role. We look forward to continuing to work with him and the RCP over the next four years.
Both the Royal College of Physicians Edinburgh and the Royal College of Physicians and Surgeons Glasgow have elected geriatricians as President in recent years and we are pleased that Fellows of the RCP London have followed this lead and placed their trust in someone with such an extensive background in geriatric medicine.
The RCP’s remit extends far beyond older people, yet we feel it will benefit from being led by someone with the expert generalist skills of a geriatrician. Furthermore, if services are put right for older people with frailty and multiple complex conditions, they are likely to be right for other population groups. This is particularly vital after the significant toll that the pandemic has taken and the challenges for the NHS and its workforce.

Dr Jennifer Burns, President of the BGS, said:

Many congratulations to Professor David Oliver on his election as President of the RCP. This election is an acknowledgement from Fellows of the RCP of David’s extensive career as a clinician and healthcare leader. We send David best wishes as he prepares to take on this important and challenging role.

Most healthcare professionals will treat older people more than any other population group and while David’s remit is of course very wide, we have confidence that he will continue to be an advocate for older people’s care in his new role. We know that he will apply his dedication to high-quality care to the benefit of everyone working in and using the NHS.

We would also like to pay tribute to outgoing RCP President Professor Bod Goddard. The BGS has worked closely with the RCP and with Bod, and we are grateful for his leadership during the pandemic. We look forward to maintaining a positive and collaborative relationship when Bod hands over to David in September."