A Chief Doctor in Lanarkshire has been awarded the prestigious William Cullen Prize for improving patient safety at University Hospital Wishaw (UHW). The award, by The Royal College of Physicians of Edinburgh, was presented to Mr Hakim Ben Younes at an NHS Lanarkshire Staff Awards ceremony in Hamilton.

College CEO, Ms Elaine Tait, presented the award to Mr Ben Younes.

Mr Ben Younes has worked on a range of initiatives to improve patient safety at UHW. This includes service redesign and improving training for medical and non-medical Endoscopists – which has helped UHW to plan for future endoscopy surgery, while making procedures better for patients. He has also set up a programme to encourage managerial and medical staff to share learning experiences, therefore benefitting patients.

Mr Ben Younes is known to UHW staff as approachable, open, honest, and courteous. He has integrity in all that he does and is interested in the development of all junior staff – he “just sees it as his job”. As a role model, Mr Ben Younes is a strategic thinker and contributes to future planning of services at UHW.

The award was presented by Elaine Tait, Chief Executive of The Royal College of Physicians of Edinburgh. She said:

The Royal College of Physicians of Edinburgh has Fellows and Members all over the world, but this prize particularly recognises local or regional training, clinical and research excellence. Through this award, we wanted to celebrate Hakim’s valuable contribution to supporting junior doctors and trainees, and improving services for patients. We want people to know what a tremendous asset Hakim is to NHS Lanarkshire, to UHW, and to patients in Lanarkshire.

It’s clear by the rapturous response when I announced Hakim as the winner, that he is an incredibly popular member of the NHS Lanarkshire family. I thank NHS Lanarkshire for giving me a very warm welcome at their staff awards ceremony, and I could tell that there was a real sense of camaraderie among those in attendance.


1. The William Cullen Prize was created in 2016 to recognise excellence in teaching or service innovation at a regional level.

Paul Gillen

Contact: Paul Gillen p.gillen@rcpe.ac.uk 0131 247 3658