This special award is given to an individual who has made an outstanding contribution to the field of cancer throughout their lifetime.
Professor Sir Mike Richards
National Cancer Director, National Clinical Director for End of Life Care
In 2000 Professor Sir Mike Richards led the development of the NHS Cancer Plan, the first comprehensive strategy to tackle cancer in England and was then responsible for overseeing its implementation. More recently he has led the development of the Cancer Reform Strategy (December 2007), the first ever End of Life Care Strategy (July 2008) and Improving Outcomes: A Strategy for Cancer (January 2011).
He works closely with ministers, parliamentarians, civil servants, clinicians, managers, patient groups, charities, researchers and industry to achieve the objectives of the plan. Prior to his appointment to the Department of Health, Mike was a Consultant Medical Oncologist at Guy’s Hospital specialising in breast cancer and Sainsbury Professor of Palliative Medicine at St Thomas’ Hospital. He was also Clinical Director of Cancer Services at Guy’s and St Thomas’.
Mike was closely involved in the establishment of the National Cancer Research Institute in 2001 and has been a board member ever since.
In June 2008 Mike was asked by Alan Johnson, then Secretary of State for Health, to lead a review of policy relating to patients who choose to pay privately for drugs that are not funded on the NHS. Mike was appointed CBE in 2001 and was awarded a Knighthood in the 2010 New Year’s Honours.