President – Dr Soon Lim
Dr. Soon Lim carries out skin surgery and vasectomies in the community and is director of the RCGP minor surgery update and assessment programme for the Bedfordshire and Hertfordshire, East Anglia, Thames Valley and central Educational Events department of the college. He also writes medicolegal reports and advises legal chambers on the issue of competence in GP minor surgery.
Vice President – Dr Gareth James
Dr Gareth James is a 3/4 time Senior Partner and Management Lead GP in Daventry, Northamptonshire.
He has undertaken over 2500 vasectomies (over 2000 via the MIV/NSV method).
He is passionate about audit and research, and has been the Audit lead for ASPC since it joined with BANSV. He was instrumental in setting up the standardised questionnaires for patients following their vasectomies allowing a wealth of data to be collected over the past 8 years.
He has also now put together Carpel tunnel patient surveys, and a more patient centrered Skin Surgery survey.
He runs the SurveyMonkey audit tool for the ASPC.
His interests include reading, listening to music, and following Welsh Rugby fortunes.
Vice President – Dr Manu Alexander
Dr Manu Alexander is a Fellow of the Royal College of Surgeons of Edinburgh and Glasgow, works in Liverpool, as a GP principal and a primary care surgeon. He has previous experience working in general surgery and urology. He provides a community based surgical service for the population of Knowsley, Liverpool, for the last 11years .He does skin surgery and no scalpel vasectomy. He is keen to develop and provide surgical services that are safe and cost effective in primary care.
Council Member – Dr Jonathan Botting
Dr Jonathan Botting works in Barnes SW London as a GP and GP trainer. As well as community based minor surgery he is a dermatological surgeon at Chelsea & Westminster and Queen Mary’s Hospitals. He created and is Programme Director for the Diploma in Minor Surgery run by Rila. He is commissioned by the London Deanery to teach minor surgery to GP registrars and is the RCGP Clinical Champion for minor surgery.
Council Member – Dr Tony Feltbower
Dr Tony Fetbower is now semi-retired from general practice having been a GP for over 30 years, but still does 2 surgeries a week. He has recently retired from his role as clinical leader on his local CCG. He has been doing vasectomies for 20 years, perhaps 5,000 so far, and is registered as principal trainer with the FSRH, although now only ‘trains’ those who require their skills updating rather than from ‘scratch’. He writes regular medico-legal reports (for solicitors, Defence Societies, GMC and Coroners) relating to GP negligence and also has an Occupational Health qualification. Full details can be seen on his website: www.DrFeltbower.com
Council Member – Dr Albert Benjamin
Albert has an abiding interest in community based local anaesthetic surgical procedures and graduated in medicine from Cambridge University where he did surgical rotational training in Edinburgh. He is a Fellow of the Royal College of Surgeons in Edinburgh and a member of the Royal College of General Practitioners. He is also an associate member of the BSSH (British Society for Surgery of the Hand)
Additionally he holds the Postgraduate Certificate of Medical Education from Keele University.
Albert has board level commissioning experience latterly within Walsall CCG. At present he is the Medical Director of Humanitas Healthcare Services Limited (a private provider of community based surgery). Currently he is expanding his portfolio of community based surgery to include vasectomy, carpal tunnel and other hand surgical procedures, and skin surgery.
Council Member – Dr Yen Lam
Yen trained at King’s College, London and qualified in 1997, during which time she gained a BSc. in Biochemistry and studied the Biology and Aging, Neuropharmacology and Neurotoxicology.
Yen embarked on surgical training and gained her Membership to the Royal College Of Surgeons of Edinburgh in 2002 and worked as a surgeon for eight years, before re-training to be a GP. She is now a part-time GP in Wallington, Surrey and works for Tollgate Clinic performing carpal tunnel decompression and vasectomies and also a training others in Carpal Tunnel Surgery. Yen has a keen interest in Aesthetics and started her own aesthetics company.
Council Member – Dr Tejal Mehta
Tejal Mehta qualified from Kings College London in 2009. After a brief period of training in core surgery, she completed her GP Vocational training in Lincoln. To further her interest in surgery, she went on to do a fellowship in Hand Surgery with the Leicester orthopaedic department. During this year she also completed a postgraduate diploma in minor surgery, from Rila Institute of Health Sciences London.
Tejal is currently working as a GP in Leicestershire and Birmingham. As well as community based minor surgery, in particular Carpal Tunnel Surgery, she also carries out aesthetic work in Botox and fillers. Tejal wanted to join the ASPC council to engage with and encourage the younger generation of GPs and VTS doctors who have a surgical interests and bring them under the ASPC umbrella.
Council Member – Dr Sree Varma
Sree Varma qualified from Southern India in 1992 and pursued a career in General surgery, then becoming a Fellow of the College of surgeons of Edinburgh in 1996. Having done, fair bit of General, Vascular and Orthopaedic surgery, he also worked for 4 years in Accident & Emergency before taking up General Practice in 2002. He is a full-time GP principal with an interest in community based Surgery and an accredited GP Trainer in a large semi-rural training practice in Kent, since 2004. He performs Vasectomies, Carpal Tunnel decompressions and skin surgery within the community. He was elected as a Fellow of the College of General Practitioners, in 2015. He enjoys teaching and it is my ambition to be involved in training both GP’s and GPSWI’s in community based surgery.
Council Member – Dr Nanda Pillai
I work in Walsall CCG as GPwSI. I did my Medical School in Kerala, India and then completed post graduate training in 1989. I worked shortly as a consultant Orthopaedic Surgeon before coming to UK in 1993. In the UK I worked in Orthopaedics as Associate specialist till 2002 and then became GP principal in 2004. I was the assistant Clinical lead for minor surgery for walsall CCG till 2015.I am the Hand Surgery lead for ASPC. I do a wide range of minor surgery under local anaesthetic, including No Scalpel Vasectomy, Adult Circumcision, Frenuloplasty , Foot procedures like tenotomy, Bunionectomy and Hand procedures including Carpal Tunnel release, Trigger finger release, Ulnar nerve release at elbow and wrist, Dequervain’s release, Dupuytren’s fasciectomy, etc. There is an extensive range of foot, hand and other procedures than can be done in primary care at a fraction of the cost when performed in the hospital. My aim is to have proper standards, accreditation and audit for these procedures in primary care and help build confidence in GPwSI and commissioners to shift these into primary care.
Council Member – Dr Mohammed Hassan
Primary and Secondary schooling was in Baghdad. I studied medicine in the Basra Medical school and graduated with MB ChB from the University of Basra, Iraq. First junior medical internship was in Bagdad’s hospitals, then out-reach posts in Iraqi Kurdistan for two years. Senior internship in ophthalmology in Al-Ramad Hospital in Baghdad. Pass the famous PLAB test and then Primary FRCS in Glasgow. I got Diploma in Ophthalmology from Ireland, FRCSEd from Edinburgh ,FRCOphth from London, FICS from USA, and PG Cert HCL from the Open University. My ophthalmic posts were in Cardiff, Middlesbrough, Glasgow , Wakefield, Wolverhampton . I got my CCST in Ophthalmology from Moorfields Eye Hospital where I was trained for four years. Now, I am a consultant Ophthalmic Surgeon In south Yorkshire City of Rotherham. I held a session on minor ophthalmic surgery in ASPC Conference two years ago.
Provost – Professor (Hon) Vijay Kumar
Prof. Vijay Kumar is a Fellow of the Royal College of Surgeons of Edinburgh and a member of the Royal college of GP’s. He works in S.Yorkshire as a GP and Community surgical trainer. He is one of the early founding member of ASPC and was its President from 2014-2018.
He has previous experience of working as a Breast, colorectal and laparoscopic Surgeon. He Provides a community based surgical service and assists in commissioning, training and Governance process on surgical services being set up locally and elsewhere in England. He has over 29 years of Experience in the NHS and Abroad.He is passionate about Health care reform and has visited, observed and lectured on Changing healthcare Delivery in parts of Europe, America,Asia and the Middle East including recently in Washington DC. He was the lead GP on the Leadership Training for GP Consortia Development and leadership training for CCG chairs for the Yorkshire and Humber PCO’s.
He is the current Chairman of the Royal College of GP’s – Yorkshire Faculty and is the Yorkshire Faculty Representative on the college national council.He is enthusiastic about the New models of Care Delivery .He had been commissioned by the RCGP -Yorkshire Faculty to run the community level 1 and level 2 Surgery course .He is an Honorary advisor for new models of Commissioning- a move from the Soviet model to a British based one ,for the Kazakastan Association of Family Practice ( RCGP equivalent) in Central area and periodically visits and lectures in their universities He is also a Member of the American Academy of Family Practice and the NHS Leader of the year winner in 2015.
Former President – Dr Laurel Spooner
Dr Spooner stepped down as President of ASPC in May 2014 and has been succeeded by Dr Vijay Kumar. She qualified from Cambridge University and has been a GP partner since 1984. As it was so difficult to choose between a career in surgery or general practice she combined them. She is best known for performing around 10,000 vasectomies and training 100 or so doctors in the technique but actually she is convinced that ALL procedures which can be performed safely outside a hospital Day Case Unit should be. This was NHS policy but never carried out which is why so many brand new facilities still stand empty. She has campaigned for the last 10 years to get simple procedures moved out and at last Community Surgery is developing in much the way Day Case Surgery has over the last 30 years. Both faced widespread misgivings but look at Day Case Surgery now! Community Surgery is sure to succeed for all the reasons that Day Case Units have flourished: safety, cost effectiveness, patient preference and proper use of NHS facilities. Dr Spooner’s wish is to bring primary and secondary care staff together to manage this collaboratively. She is happy to represent ASPC at any meetings or events and especially keen to assist Commissioners covering this area of health provision.
Founder & Past President – Mr Raj Dhumale
Mr Raj Dhumale commenced offering surgical services from a GP setting in 1994. He was the first GP surgeon to perform and offer hernia surgery as a routine elective service in the UK from the stand alone GP setting. He was awarded the ‘Doctor of the Year’ in 1997 for his innovative surgical service in Primary care. He is a member of the American and European Hernia Societies.