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Professor Elisabeth Paice


Experienced Coach, and Former Dean Director, The London Deanery Professor Elisabeth (Lis) Paice was born in Washington DC, the youngest of six children. Her family moved to Montreal, Dublin and then Paris and Lis completed her schooling at the International School in Geneva. She only decided to become a doctor in her final year at school, when she was doing A ‘levels in English, French and History. As a result, she spent the next year cramming science A ‘levels. A chance encounter with the best man at her sister’s wedding resulted in wedding bells for Lis while at Trinity College, Dublin. She then transferred to Westminster Medical School and qualified in 1970. Two years later Lis gained her MRCP, and as a Medical Registrar within the Oxford Region, Lis was able to access the ‘Married Women’s Part-Time Training Scheme’ that was set up by Dame Rosemary Rue. She spent the next seven years training part-time while raising three children and took up a fulltime Consultant Rheumatologist post at the Whittington Hospital in 1982. During her time at Whittington Hospital, Lis became interested in postgraduate medical education and became Clinical Tutor. She was later appointed Associate Postgraduate Dean for North East Thames, with responsibility for the preregistration and senior house officer years and flexible training. She began a series of hospital visits, interviewing this group of junior doctors in every department and every hospital. The findings were shocking and thus began the annual trainee survey, which later became the basis for the General Medical Council’s Trainee Survey, several publications and some much-needed reforms. In 1995, Lis became the Dean Director of Thames Postgraduate Medical and Dental Education and specifically focused on flexible training such that no eligible trainee had to wait for funding, and left her clinical job at Whittington Hospital. Despite much reconfiguration in the region, Lis remained in her role as Dean Director until 2010. She was Chair of the Conference of Postgraduate Medical Deans in the UK from 2006-2008. A year later, Lis was invited to be the independent Chair of the North West London Integrated Care Programme and has since been involved with this programme. She was also asked to lead the patient involvement work, which led to the development of the Lay Partner Advisory Group. Her greatest lesson is that she did not learn much earlier to involve patients in the strategic decisions that affect their care. The best career decision Lis made was to keep working beyond the age of 65, but in preparation for her retirement, she undertook training as a Coach and Mentor and developed a passion for this work. She wrote about her learning in New Coach, published in 2012, and the same year she and her sister published a book entitled A Grandparent’s Survival Guide to Childcare. Lis continues to work as a Non-Executive Director at Hillingdon Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust and is a Visiting

Professor in the Faculty of Clinical Sciences at University College London and at Imperial College London. She is an active Coach and Mentor and now trains other coaches. Lis has made an enormous difference to the work and lives of the next generation of doctors by publishing extensively on doctors in difficulty, workplace bullying, and women in medicine. She is inspired by the commitment and excellence of so many young doctors she has worked with over the years. In 2010 she received the NHS Leadership Academy Award for Mentor of the Year, gained an Honorary Fellowship of the Academy of Medical Educators, and the National Award for Professional Excellence from the British Association of Physicians of Indian Origin. In 2011, Lis received an OBE for services to medicine, the NHS Leadership Award for Partnership of the Year in 2012 and the London Leadership Award for Patient Champion in 2015. Lis has three children and six grandchildren and lives in London with her husband. * Favourite Music: Manha de Carnivale by Stan Getz * Most inspired by: Atul Gawande for his intelligent analysis of health care issues

Elisabeth’s advice to junior doctors is to “Look after yourself and your family. No-one else will.”


Medical Woman | Spring 2017

Medical Woman – Magazine Centenary Issue, April 2017  

The magazine for the Medical Women’s Federation (MWF), the largest and most influential body of women doctors in the UK which aims to promot...

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