A renowned Wigan doctor has been given a lifetime achievement award to mark the 70th anniversary of the NHS.
Dr Nayyar Naqvi, a consultant cardiologist for Wrightington, Wigan And Leigh NHS Foundation Trust, was named as a regional champion by the NHS in the North.
Other news: Wigan woman faced cash demands from former employer after retiring to fight cancer
He will now vie with other regional winners for the national award, which will be presented at the Palace Of Westminster on July 4.
The NHS70 Parliamentary Awards recognise the contribution made by the individuals who work in and alongside the NHS.
Dr Naqvi said: “It has been the guiding principles of my life to serve my fellow human beings. This is a tremendous accolade and I am overwhelmed and very proud.”
Dr Naqvi was nominated by Wigan MP Lisa Nandy.
She said: “I know that everyone in Wigan will share my delight and pride that Dr Naqvi has been named regional champion.
“Dr Naqvi is a much loved, well respected surgeon whose commitment and passion enabled us to raise £3m in public donations and build a leading, life-saving heart unit in Wigan.”
Dr Naqvi was among 10 regional champions named from 217 entries.
Since moving to Billinge Hospital as a junior doctor in 1979, he has worked to revolutionise the way in which heart problems are treated.
He came across the term “Wigan heart syndrome”, which was applied to any end-stage heart failure, and made it his life’s mission to improve the lives of patients with cardiac problems.
He set up his first public fund-raising appeal in 1981, which eventually paid for the first cardiac catheter unit at Wigan Infirmary.
Earlier this year, an extension to the unit was opened. The discharge lounge, which is complete with a large screen television, therapy chairs and a private consultation room, cost £320,000, which was funded entirely by public donations after Dr Naqvi launched an appeal.
The NHS award is the latest given to Dr Naqvi during a long and distinguished career.
In 2004 he was given an OBE by the Queen and in 2013 he was honoured with a star on Wigan Council’s Walk of Fame outside the Life Centre.