John Marks (doctor)
John Henry Marks (born 30 May 1925, London) was the Chairman of the British Medical Association from 1984 to 1990. His six-year term is unique - at the time he was leading the Association and the profession in a campaign against Kenneth Clarke's reforms of the NHS based on the untried concept of an internal market. He played a major role in defending the Abortion Act 1967 in the face of attacks by "pro-lifers" including Victoria Gillick and the MPs David Alton and Sir Russell Brain. In 1970 he successfully lead the campaign against the BMA Council's decision to recommend an annual registration fee to the GMC without prior reform of its constitution. He also played a major role in campaigns in favour of restricting smacking, the wearing of seat belts, and respecting the confidentiality of sufferers from AIDS.
He was educated at Tottenham County School and Edinburgh University, qualifying on 5 July 1948, the day that the NHS started. Following hospital posts and service in the RAMC he resided in Elstree, and worked as a General Practitioner in Borehamwood, 1954-90.
He is an MD, a Fellow of the Royal College of General Practitioners and a DObst RCOG of the Royal College of Obstetricians and Gynaecologists. His autobiography, The NHS: Beginning, Middle and End? was published in May 2008.
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