General Internal Medicine
Designatory Letters: 
MB Glasg 1952, FRCPSG 1958, MRCP Edin 1960, MD Glasg 1968, FRCP Edin 1974

George Addis was the son of a Glasgow homeopath who had himself started medical studies but had to give them up after an accident. He went to Glasgow Royal High School followed by Glasgow University on his return from war service in the Royal Navy. He qualified in 1952 by which time he was married, and entered general practice but he soon realised it was not for him. Those were the days of single-handed practices, on call day and night. He recalled making the decision to return to hospital medicine when standing in the middle of the night under one of the old gas lamps at the foot of a block of tenements, having been called to see a screaming child. On examining the child he had found she was not ill but merely crying.

Further studies followed in pharmacology and chest medicine leading eventually to a consultantship and, what he so enjoyed as did his students, teaching and training students and trainee physicians to all of whom he would say"We all work in a factory and it is part of our job to make people feel happier." One thing by which he will remembered was his introduction of nasal cannulae replacing the cumbersome masks used before that for oxygen therapy.

He had always been fascinated by the number of famous people, particularly authors, who had suffered and died with tuberculosis. One, Robert Louis Stevenson remained one of his fascinations all his life. He became world-famous for his knowledge of him leading him to visit wherever RLS had been and to research whether or not he had been one of the first people to have a chest x-ray. He had a strong artistic streak, helped by the fact that his wife was a well-known artist until she developed dementia, necessitating her husband to devote his life to her care for her final five years.

His daughter, Gail, is a doctor and had the pleasure of being taught by her father.