Observations BMJ Confidential

Michael Rawlins: Pet hate is the Daily Mail

BMJ 2013; 347 doi: https://doi.org/10.1136/bmj.f6321 (Published 23 October 2013) Cite this as: BMJ 2013;347:f6321

In the second of its new series of interviews with some of the movers and shakers of the medical world the BMJ asked the recently retired chairman of NICE about work, life, and less serious matters


Michael Rawlins is the rock on which the contrary tides of opinion have dashed themselves since he and Andrew Dillon established the National Institute for Clinical Excellence (NICE), as it was then called, in 1999. As NICE’s chairman until March 2013 Rawlins never wavered in his determination that evidence alone should determine how NHS money was spent, nor in his good humour in defending this sometimes unpopular position. A clinical pharmacologist, he had previously chaired the Committee on Safety of Medicines and the Advisory Council on the Misuse of Drugs. Since leaving NICE he has chaired the Royal College of Physicians’ Future Hospitals programme. He is 72.

What was your earliest ambition?

I very much enjoyed biology at school, but in those days there wasn’t much you could …

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