RCGP Cymru Wales announce new Chair-elect

Dr Rowena Christmas has been elected as the new Chair-Elect of the Royal College of General Practitioners Cymru Wales.

Dr Christmas is a GP Principal at Wye Valley Practice in Monmouthshire where she has worked for 22 years. Rowena is a passionate advocate of the importance of Primary Care to the NHS and of the value of continuity of care for both patients & doctors. She serves on the RCGP Committee of Medical Ethics and has been RCGP Lead for Safeguarding in Wales. Outside the College, Rowena is Vice Chair of the Welsh Medical Committee, leading on Safeguarding & Advance Care Planning and a Bevan Exemplar for the establishment of Safeguarding Supervision Groups across Wales. She has been an active advocate for general practice in the media.

RCGP Cymru Wales can also announce that, Gowerton GP, Dr Shanti Karupiah has been elected as Vice Chair. Both posts are three-year terms and will begin in November when current Joint-Chairs Dr Mair Hopkin and Professor Peter Saul, along with Vice-Chair Dr Robert Morgan will demit office.

Dr Rowena Christmas said:

“I’m very much looking forward to taking up this role and contributing to a sustainable future for general practice in Wales. COVID-19 has challenged the profession in a way I have not previously experienced in my career. Our GPs have responded heroically, keeping general practice open through-out the pandemic, rapidly adapting to necessary new ways of working and now playing our part in Wales’ world-leading vaccination programme.

"Mair and Peter have been exceptional Chairs for the College in Wales and brilliant representatives of the profession. They will be a tough act to follow but I am looking forward to working hard, listening to our members, and hopefully making a difference.”

Dr Mair Hopkin and Professor Peter Saul issued a joint statement which said:

“We are really pleased to hear of Rowena’s election to the post of Chair and Shanti taking the role of Vice Chair. The College and general practice in Wales could not be in safer hands. Both have been very active members of RCGP Cymru Wales and are fizzing with ideas that will take the College forward. We will be working closely with the Chair-Elect and Vice Chair-Elect for the remainder of our term in office."

Further information

For Press enquires, please contact:

Nicolas Webb, RCGP Cymru Wales Policy and Public Affairs Manager
07341 737034

Notes to editor

The Royal College of GPs Wales represents a network of around 2,100 GPs, aiming to improve care for patients. We work to encourage and maintain the highest standards of general medical practice and act as the voice of GPs on resources, education, training, research and clinical standards.