Tributes paid to Filey GP and Scarborogh and Ryedale CCG boss Dr Phil Garnett who passed away after living with cancer
Tributes have been paid to a Filey-based GP who has passed away after a battle with cancer.
Dr Phil Garnett, who had been chairman of Scarborough and Ryedale Clinical Commissioning Group (CCG) since its formal inception in April 2013, was still working "just a few days before his death" according to the CCG.
Friend and colleague Dr Peter Billingsley, Associate Chair of the CCG, said: "This is an incredibly sad time for the NHS in Scarborough and Ryedale and on behalf of our Governing Body and staff, I would like to express my deep condolences to Phil's family, friends and colleagues at Filey Surgery.
"Phil was driven by a burning desire to make the NHS the best it could be and throughout his time at the helm of our organisation - and indeed throughout his distinguished career as a GP - he was determined to secure the best possible services for patients."
Dr Garnett had nearly 50 years' experience after qualifying in Leeds in 1973 and joining Filey Surgery five years later.
He held senior positions with the local Primary Care Trust, Primary Care Group and St Catherine's Hospice, as well as having a heavy involvement in the North Yorkshire Local Medical Committee.
Dr Billingsley added: "He very much led from the front and was an exceptionally gifted speaker, possessing a wonderful sense of dry humour and wit to match his intellect.
"Phil was erudite, captivating and charming and people always listened to what he had to say."
Following five years' work in secondary care with paediatrics, Dr Garnett gained a Diploma in Child Health from the Royal College of Obstetricians and Gynaecologists and became a Member of the Royal College of Physicians.
Carolyn Liddle, the Practice Manager at Filey Surgery said: "It is with heavy hearts that we say goodbye to our friend and colleague Dr Phil Garnett.
"He was a GP here in Filey for 40 years and was a much respected and loved doctor.
“The people of Filey will miss him as many of them will have been patients of Dr Garnett for many years. Amongst the sorrow there are smiles from his colleagues at the surgery as we remember a lot of good times.”
Simon Cox, the former Accountable Officer of NHS Scarborough and Ryedale CCG and now the Director of Acute Commissioning for the three CCGs in North Yorkshire, said: “Phil’s desire to see the NHS flourish shone brightly throughout our time together at the helm of the CCG.
“He was a strong and passionate voice for local health services and his commitment to the NHS in Scarborough and Ryedale was unwavering, even when his own health was faltering."
Dr Charles Parker, the current Clinical Chair of NHS Hambleton, Richmondshire and Whitby CCG and chair elect for North Yorkshire CCG, said Dr Garnett had been “indefatigable” in his promotion of primary care over many years and added: “It has been a privilege to work with him over the last year, working in the single leadership team for the CCGs.
“Phil was well liked and respected by us all and throughout the local NHS. He was a gentle character and I will miss him. Phil was such a long time servant within the health service that it is difficult to imagine a time without him. My thoughts and prayers are with his family and friends at this time.”