Professor Sir Lewis Ritchie OBE has been knighted for services to the NHS in Scotland by Her Majesty the Queen at Holyrood Palace in Edinburgh.
Sir Lewis was formally invested on 5 July with his wife Heather and mother Sheila in attendance as guests.
Sir Lewis is James Mackenzie Professor of General Practice at the University of Aberdeen, and has worked as a GP at Peterhead Health Centre and Community Hospital for almost all of his professional medical career. He is also an Honorary Consultant in Public Health Medicine with NHS Grampian.
Sir Lewis was born and has stayed all his life in Fraserburgh. He was brought up in the harbour area of the town and attended the Infant and Central Schools and Fraserburgh Academy, where he was senior school dux. He went on to the University of Aberdeen where he took three degrees: a BSc degree in Chemistry, his MB ChB and a Doctorate in Medicine (MD). He has also received a Master's Degree (MSc) in Community Medicine from Edinburgh University. He holds Fellowships of the Royal College of Physicians of Edinburgh, the Royal College of General Practitioners, the Faculty of Public Health and the British Computer Society.
Sir Lewis wrote the book Computers in Primary Care and has received a number of national and international awards for his contributions to health care including: the Perry Prize of the British Computer Society, the Eric Elder Medal of the Royal New Zealand College of General Practitioners, the Provost Medal of the Royal College of General Practitioners (North East Scotland) and the Mackenzie Lecture and Medal of the Royal College of General Practitioners (UK).
In 2001, Sir Lewis was appointed OBE in the Queen's Birthday Honours, for services to general practice and primary care in Scotland.
He has led and chaired a number of national committees and reports including: computers/eHealth, research, immunisation, community hospitals, cardiovascular prevention/management, community pharmacy, academic GP careers, and promoting professionalism and excellence in medicine.
Sir Lewis currently chairs the Scottish Medical and Scientific Advisory Committee (SMASAC), which provides advice from all medical specialties to the Scottish Government and previously chaired the Biomedical and Therapeutic Research Committee of the Chief Scientist Office (BTRC).
He led the national implementation of the Meningococcal C and the Adult Pneumococcal Immunisation Programmes in Scotland and recently chaired the Service Delivery Group of the H1N1 (Swine Flu) Immunisation Programme. He and his team pioneered the use of computers for cardiovascular prevention and telemedicine links from Peterhead Community Hospital and he has also contributed to innovative telecare service developments throughout Scotland, including NHS 24.
Sir Lewis said: "I feel very humbled to be recognised by this honour. It has been a great privilege to serve NHS Scotland in a number of capacities and to assist the development of healthcare services and better ways of caring for patients and preventing illness.
"I am conscious of how much my contributions have crucially depended on the steadfast support of my family and by very many colleagues throughout Scotland, beginning in my practice at Peterhead and the Centre of Academic Primary Care at the University of Aberdeen.
"This award says less about my own endeavours and speaks more about the collective achievements of colleagues working on behalf of NHS Scotland."
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