Renowned psychiatrist and former NI chair due to receive Honorary Fellowship

Northern Ireland news, Press release
21 June 2024

A renowned NI psychiatrist is due to receive an Honorary Fellowship from the Royal College of Psychiatrists.

It was announced at RCPsych’s International Congress in Edinburgh that Professor Gerry Lynch will be awarded the Fellowship by RCPsych president, Dr Lade Smith CEB for his outstanding work in psychiatry, later this year.

The Fellowships are awarded annually to individuals who have made exceptional contributions to the profession.

Professor Lynch was chair of the College in NI and vice-president of RCPsych from 2016-2020.

He continues to have a leading role at the College leading on the Mental Capacity Act (NI) and also sits on the Department for Health’s Protect Life 2 – Suicide Prevention Strategy and the Towards Zero Suicide Collaborative Board. 

The consultant psychiatrist worked in the Northern HSC Trust from 1994-2016 in general psychiatry including community and inpatient teams, psychiatric intensive care, the crisis/home treatment team and the mental health liaison service.

He also had management responsibilities, serving as clinical director and divisional medical director in the Trust. In this role, he oversaw the establishment of 24-hour crisis resolution home treatment team and a comprehensive mental health liaison service.

Professor Lynch continues to sit on the Board of Action Mental Health (AMH), and work with the Troubles Permanent Disablement Payment Payment Scheme and Historical Institutional Abuse inquiry.

Professor Gerry Lynch, said: “I am very surprised but very honoured to receive notice of this award from the College.

“It’s been an honour in itself to work with the College membership and team here in NI.

“Anything I’ve achieved has only been possible due to the expertise, collaboration and support of others here who are too numerous to mention.”

Dr Julie Anderson, chair of RCPsych NI, said: “Huge congratulations - this award will so richly be deserved. “There are few out there who work as hard, are as compassionate, wise and are as truly inspirational as Gerry.

“As fellow clinicians we all look up to him. He has contributed so much and continues to improve mental health services in Northern Ireland for the better.”

Dr Lade Smith, president, added: “I would like to take this opportunity to thank Professor Gerry Lynch for his amazing achievements in promoting mental healthcare.

“His work with RCPsych NI has been impactful in raising the importance of mental illness across Northern Ireland. We are immensely proud of all he has done. This is a much-deserved award."

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