Presidential handover

Find below a message from Peter Sloane, VdGM President.


As we begin a New Year, I have taken the decision to step down as President of VdGM. Claire will take over with immediate effect from her position as President-Elect.


My decision to step down was not been taken lightly, and has been made for 2 reasons.

Firstly, just before Christmas I was offered what I regard as my ideal job as a single handed rural Family Doctor in the West of Ireland. This is a once in a lifetime opportunity which is too good to turn down but will require a very significant amount of time and effort over the coming months.

Secondly, my wife and I were delighted to welcome our son Seán to the world on 29th December. With 3 children (Bianca, Thomas and Seán) now requiring my attention as well as a new practice to be opened, I simply no longer have the time needed to continue as President of VdGM.


I would like to take this opportunity to offer deep gratitude and thanks to my colleagues on the Executive and Council and in all the various Interest and Theme Groups in VdGM including NECs, RECs and Network Liaisons.

It has been an absolute privilege over the last 2 1/2 years to lead this organisation, and I hope that during my tenure, we managed to build on the achievements of my predecessor Harris Lygidakis and his colleagues. I owe Harris a huge debt of thanks.

I would also like to thank the members of VdGM, those new and future Family Doctors across Europe who continue to make such a magnificent contribution to VdGM and Family Medicine within WONCA Europe, as well as all those colleagues within the WONCA Europe Networks and in the wider WONCA Family who gave so generously of their time in contributing to VdGM.

The WONCA Europe and WONCA World Executives and in particular Job Metsemakers and Michael Kidd deserve huge credit for the degree of support which they afforded to VdGM during their terms of office; I am sure that both Anna Stavdal and Amanda Howe will continue the commitment of both organisations to supporting the activities of VdGM.


I would also like to make special mention of Fons Sips, whose death in 2016 marked the passing of one of the Founding Fathers of VdGM. In memory of his legacy I am delighted that we were able to establish the “Fons Sips Outstanding Achievement Award” during my tenure.


Finally, I would like to wish Claire and her Executive all the very best of luck. I am confident that VdGM is in safe hands and look forward to watching it go from strength to strength in the coming years. With best wishes to each and every one of you.





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