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Gabriel V Jaffe

BMJ 2016; 352 doi: (Published 22 March 2016) Cite this as: BMJ 2016;352:i1674
  1. Simon Sebag-Montefiore
  1. London
  1. sjsmontefiore{at}

Doctor, author, mayor of Bournemouth, and businessman

Gabriel Vivian Jaffe (known as “Gay”) was a doctor who thrived not only as a general practitioner but also as a politician, serving as mayor of Bournemouth and as a councillor for many years. He published books and articles and was a respected media executive, chairing the local radio for some years. It says something of his diverse interests that in the same week in which his death notice appeared in the Daily Telegraph, one of his case studies was being quoted in another part of the same newspaper: as the doctor on the Queen Mary, Jaffe had been approached by a man who was experiencing difficulties with impotence and had asked for help. Since Jaffe lacked any appropriate medication, he confidently prescribed aspirin, giving a careful schedule of how and when to take it, implying it was a radical and secret new treatment. The next day the man rushed up to him to thank him for this brilliant cure.

Jaffe was first and foremost a doctor, always studying the latest medical developments. As mayor of Bournemouth, he fulfilled his dream of conducting the Bournemouth Symphony Orchestra playing Rossini’s William …

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