CHARLES GRAHAM - Salute a Wigan medical hero

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DOCTOR Nayyar Naqvi is just as famous in Wigan for his fund-raising exploits as he is for the countless lives he has saved.

While accepting that the NHS does not have bottomless pockets, it is sometimes amazing that it has to rely so heavily on charity for equipment and other facilities that we might expect to be there as part of a regular service.

Veteran cardiac specialist Dr Naqvi, however, has been under no allusions about this for many a year and it was only through his Heart Fund in the 1980s that Wigan Infirmary got a proper Coronary Care Unit.

And all these years later he has been at it again, co-ordinating another massive money-spinning project to complement hospital trust funding for a state-of-the-art new CCU.

It was officially opened this week but has already been running for several months during which time it has been credited as a centre of excellence.

Given Wigan’s appalling track record for coronary heart disease, it couldn’t come a moment too soon. Dr Naqvi deserves huge praise.