RCGP awards: Guidance for making a nomination

As a registered charity, it’s especially important that our awards are made to the most appropriate people and that the award procedures are open and transparent. Remember that we receive many nominations, and not all are successful.


Our awards recognise the excellence, efforts and contributions made to general practice.

Accuracy and completeness

To apply for or nominate someone for an award, make sure all necessary information is accurate and up-to-date. The responsibility lies with the applicant or nominator.

Special relationship with the nominee

It’s inappropriate to nominate someone with whom you have a close personal relationship, for example, a spouse or someone you are in a partnership with.

Suppose you nominate someone you work with at a university or other institution. In that case, you must explain the exact nature of your working relationship on the nomination form.

Eligibility for awards

Our awards recognise outstanding work for RCGP and for the development of general practice.

All prizes given to GPs will require them to be RCGP members or fellows in good standing (unless the specific criteria state otherwise).

Contributions to general practice can come from various employment conditions, such as:

  • self-employed
  • salaried
  • third-sector status.

These contributions may be made through clinical, educational, research, or leadership roles that have impacted a significant population or part of the health system within the primary healthcare system.

Achievements while holding party political office in themselves cannot be counted towards an award.

General nomination guidelines

The following guidelines apply to RCGP awards:

  • wherever possible, nominations should be made without the knowledge of the candidate
  • it’s not appropriate to nominate yourself for an award, other than a competition award - and self-canvassing is discouraged
  • the awarding committee reserves the right to recommend nomination for a different award if this would be more applicable (the nominator would be contacted if this happens)
  • the same piece of work can only be used to apply for one RCGP award within a three-year period
  • information given on applications will be used solely to support the objectives of RCGP in administering its awards, and all data will be processed following the Data Protection Act 1998.

Nominating RCGP members for State Honours

Anyone can now nominate an individual and the GOV.UK website has guidance about how the Honours System works and how to make a nomination.

The RCGP nominates members for outstanding contributions to General Practice. The President is responsible for these nominations. Nominations are welcome to celebrate those who have significantly contributed to patient care through General Practice, including:

  • front-line GPs
  • academics
  • innovators
  • those in other impactful branches of work.

In each round, only some individuals will be recognised for their General Practice or Primary Care services - the standards are very high.

The citation is the critical piece of evidence which is submitted. It is limited to 3000 characters – around 4-5 paragraphs. It must clearly articulate the individual’s achievement and what has changed. It needs to make a robust case for demonstrating how this is exceptional and above what would be expected in their day-to-day work. Strong letters of support can help amplify the citation achievements and give further information to help the committee in its deliberations.

RCGP is keen to put forward those members whose achievements truly deserve recognition in this way and reflect our growing and diverse membership. To nominate a member, you should approach your Faculty Chair or Provost to secure their support. They can advise you on submitting a citation form and obtaining consent from others.

It's crucial to follow the established protocols. For instance, it's best not to inform anyone about your plans to nominate someone. This helps manage expectations and recognises that the Queen's decisions are discretionary and considered a gift. More information about this can be found on the government website.