Intended for healthcare professionals


Jean-Pierre van Besouw

BMJ 2017; 358 doi: (Published 07 September 2017) Cite this as: BMJ 2017;358:j4103
  1. Chris Mahony
  1. London, UK
  1. chris.mahony{at}

Championed and developed the role of anaesthetists

Jean-Pierre van Besouw, who has died at the age of 60 nearly two years after being diagnosed with a brain tumour, championed the perioperative role of anaesthetists. Known to colleagues as J-P, van Besouw served as president of the Royal College of Anaesthetists (RCoA) for three years from 2012—referring to the college ceremonial robes he donned for official duties as “my high vis jacket.” During the last two years of that term he also filled the role of vice-chairman of the Academy of Medical Royal Colleges.

During his RCoA presidency he continued to work as a consultant cardiac anaesthetist at St George’s University Hospital NHS Foundation Trust, the post he was appointed to on completion of his medical training in 1990. He saw this ongoing patient contact as an important base for …

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