Ian Trevor Field

BMJ 2013; 347 doi: (Published 30 October 2013) Cite this as: BMJ 2013;347:f5981
  1. Giles Field

A man of strong principles, borne of his Christian faith and support for ecumenism, Ian Trevor Field was a rigorous defender of medical ethics. As secretary general of the World Medical Association (WMA) in the mid 1990s he was a leading voice on many issues, from urging restrictions on the use of landmines to opposing the involvement of doctors in the administration of lethal injections. He matched his medical skills with his abilities as a diplomat, working hard for doctors who had been imprisoned under antiterrorism laws in their own countries for administering medical care to rebel fighters. In 1994 Ian Field travelled, on behalf of the WMA, to Peru, aiding the release of 22 doctors who were imprisoned.

Ian Field started his career in medical administration at the BMA, where—as an assistant secretary, and then undersecretary—he dealt with the rebellion of junior doctors over long working hours. Throughout his career, Ian Field was closely involved in restructuring the NHS; as secretary of the BMA in the early 1990s he met the then prime minister, John Major, on numerous occasions to discuss NHS finances and reforms.

A member of …

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