The ‘driving force’ of Budleigh Salterton’s health hub retires from helm of hospital Friends’ group
PUBLISHED: 17:00 26 August 2018
The ‘driving force’ behind the town’s health hub has announced his retirement after 13 years at the helm of the League of Friends of Budleigh Salterton Hospital.
Doctor David Evans, a GP in the town for 30 years, retired as chairman of the group after more than a decade of support; he had been a trustee ‘for a good many years’ before.
During his years caring for the medical needs of people living in Budleigh, and working closely with the local NHS, Dr Evans realised the town’s need for a health and wellbeing hub, offering clinical health and social care to the community.
Dr Graham Taylor, spokesman for the League of Friends of Budleigh Salterton Hospital, said: “Dr Evans had also worked with Dr Richard Mejzner for a number of years as a GP in the same practice, and it was they who generated the vision and interest for the idea of the hub.
“This new hub is a ground-breaking pilot concept and is in keeping with NHS England’s five-year forward view for care in the community.
“Dr Evans was the ambassador for this project and the driving force, in complex contractual negotiations.
“The project had many ups and downs these past few years, not least because of the challenging budgetary situation in the NHS.
“It is certain that, without Dr Evans’ leading involvement, the hub would not have gone ahead.”
Dr Evans became chairman of League of Friends of Budleigh Salterton Hospital in 2002.
As a GP, he worked at the local cottage hospital, caring for patients, and as the minor surgical operations’ anaesthetist.
In the late 1960’s he successfully campaigned to prevent Budleigh hospital’s closure.
After he retired as GP, Dr Evans continued as chairman of the local health centre charity.
Dr Taylor said: “As a GP of the old school Dr Evans was always on call, even when not on duty, selflessly visiting patients at any time of the day and night as needed.
“He always went the extra mile, and is loved, trusted and respected by his patients, and his colleagues, to this day.
“Dr Evans continues as a trustee of the League of Friends, where his wise counsel continues to be greatly appreciated.