Alan Hewett PhillipsBMJ 2006; 332 doi: https://doi.org/10.1136/bmj.332.7534.182-d (Published 19 January 2006) Cite this as: BMJ 2006;332:182
Alan Hewett PhillipsFormer consultant anaesthetist Royal Gwent Hospital (b Ton Pentre, Rhondda, Glamorgan, 22 April 1926; q Guy’s 1949; FFARCS), died in Newport, Gwent, from a myocardial infarction on 20 May 2005, aged 79.
Alan Phillips attended Porth County Grammar School and entered Guy’s Hospital Medical School aged 17. After national service in the Royal Army Medical Corps, he trained in anaesthetics at Cardiff and was appointed to the staff of the Royal Gwent Hospital in 1959.
His early career saw the provision of service throughout Gwent, the last phase of cardiothoracic surgery at the district hospital, and the introduction of the intensive care unit. He played a pivotal role in all. Boyish good looks, which always made him appear 10 years younger than his true age, often raised an eyebrow from a patient or ageing surgeon at this time, but his skill, care, courtesy, and smile always won them over. Later, his enthusiasm and experience contributed enormously to the establishment of one of the largest departments in the country. He was president of the Welsh Society of Anaesthetists in 1987.
Sportsman, organist, mathematician, historian, gardener, cook and party giver, he was, above all, devoted to his family, the true passion of his life.
Multiple sclerosis was diagnosed just before he retired. His last years were marred by increasing disability, but he retained his razor sharp mental faculties and cheery good humour to the end. He fulfilled his dearest wish, to continue to live at home, with the unfailing and devoted care of Pearl, his wife of 57 years. Their love gave him courage, then equanimity. He died suddenly in his sleep of a heart attack.
He is survived by Pearl, three children, and seven grandchildren. [Eric Sturdy, Martin Phillips]
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