Glasgow & West Scotland

War zone doctor David Nott wins Robert Burns Humanitarian Award

Dr David Nott

A British doctor who risked his life to save those injured in war zones around the world has been named winner of a global humanitarian award.

Dr David Nott is a volunteer with Medecins Sans Frontieres and the International Committee of the Red Cross.

He was presented with the Robert Burns Humanitarian Award 2016 at a special ceremony in Alloway, Burns' birthplace.

The award recognises those who help change people's lives for the better.

For more than two decades, Dr Nott - a consultant surgeon at Royal Marsden, St Mary's and Chelsea and Westminster Hospitals - has given up several months every year for more to volunteer in war zones and amidst major humanitarian crises.

He's been described by colleagues as "the Indiana Jones of surgery".

'Very real difference'

He has performed life-saving surgery in Afghanistan, Bosnia, Iraq, Libya, Pakistan and Syria.

He also set up the David Nott Foundation which offers other surgeons and medical professionals training and advice on how to help in conflict and natural disaster zones around the world.

The Robert Burns Humanitarian Award - supported by South Ayrshire Council - "applauds the efforts of people who bring hope and inspiration - often in desperate situations".

This is the 15th time it has been presented.

Organisers said it took its inspiration from Robert Burns "who viewed everyone as equal and genuinely lived as a true humanitarian".

Dr Nott said: "I am stunned and very proud to receive this amazing award, which I share with the many people I have worked with over the years.

"You know that you're taking a risk when you do this type of humanitarian work, but once you're out there and saving the lives of people - including children and teenagers the world has forgotten about - you just focus on getting the job done and try to forget about what's going on around you.

"It is difficult - there's no doubt - but when you can see that you can make a very real difference, you simply cannot turn your back and that's why I'm particularly pleased to have established the foundation to keep that work going."

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