John Brocklehurst

BMJ 2013; 347 doi: (Published 27 August 2013) Cite this as: BMJ 2013;347:f5204
  1. Ned Stafford, Hamburg

John Brocklehurst, pioneering geriatrician and gerontologist

Emeritus professor of geriatric medicine (b 1924; q Glasgow University 1947; CBE, FRFS, FRCP, FRCP Glas, MSc Manch, FRCP Lond), died from cancer on 27 June 2013.

Long before John Brocklehurst learned the sometimes harsh realties of being an old man, he was successfully striving to improve medical care and quality of life for older people.

In 1948, as a young doctor working on an advanced medical degree, he was offered a scholarship to investigate incontinence in elderly people. The research became the basis for his thesis and planted the seed for what would become his lifelong interest in geriatrics and gerontology.

As he neared retirement age—after decades of pioneering work in geriatrics and gerontology, including serving from 1984 to 1986 as president of the British Geriatrics Society—Brocklehurst wrote: “Looking back, I cannot imagine any other field of medicine which I would have had greater satisfaction in, nor in which the opportunities for pioneering and development could have been greater.”

Graham Mulley, former president of the British Geriatrics Society and emeritus professor of elderly care, University of Leeds, …

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