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King's medical student awarded national George Lewith Prize

The National Institute for Health Research (NIHR) School for Primary Care Research holds an annual competition for undergraduate medical students in memory of the late Southampton University clinician, academic and mentor, Professor George Lewith. Ryan Jayesinghe, a student on King’s Medicine MBBS degree, has been awarded this year’s George Lewith Prize for General Practice, in recognition of his recent research in primary care.

A common perception amongst students is that general practice does not offer an academic career pathway and that if you aspire to do research, a hospital speciality is the default position. To address this, the NIHR School for Primary Care Research launched the prize to encourage talented medical students to consider a career in academic primary care.

Ryan has just completed an iBSc in Primary Care at King’s and will be starting the penultimate year of his medical degree this month. As part of the iBSc programme, Ryan conducted a research project, supervised by Dr Patrick Redmond from King’s School of Population Health & Environmental Sciences.

The project investigated the medication costs of potentially inappropriate prescribing within middle-aged adults in South London general practices. In a recent video, Ryan summarises his research findings:

I feel incredibly grateful and fortunate to receive such a prestigious prize. I invested so much time, energy and effort into my research project and to have that recognised by the NIHR was a humbling experience. Receiving this award not only acknowledges my achievements but the support of all those who have helped me with my project.– Ryan Jayesinghe

The project was considered alongside applications from medical students across the UK. Ryan is one of two prize winners who both secured a funded place at the Society of Academic Primary Care (SAPC) Annual Scientific Meeting.

Ryan adds: “I have learnt so much from this experience from working with Dr Redmond. I have developed my knowledge and understanding of conducting research and statistics, communication, publication and the wider academic process. I also have a greater understanding of how the outputs of academic work within primary care can impact policymaking, clinical guidance and patient care.”

It was a pleasure to see Ryan’s research receiving national recognition with this competitively awarded prize. King’s iBSc in Primary Care programme goes from strength to strength and we look forward to Ryan being a colleague in academic primary care in the future.– Dr Patrick Redmond

Ryan now aspires to continue his research of potentially inappropriate prescribing and hopes to one day train within the NIHR infrastructure as an academic clinical fellow to utilise his skillset to mentor and support aspiring researchers.

Read more about the George Lewith Prize for General Practice.

Follow Ryan on Twitter: @RyanJayesinghe

In this story

Patrick Redmond

Patrick Redmond

NIHR Clinical Lecturer

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