Nottingham Hospitals History

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ERNEST HENRY HOUFTON


(1872 - 1926)


President of the Nottingham Medico-Chirurgical Society


1923 to 1924.


Ernest Henry Houfton:- Bath House, Mansfield, Nott's. Doctor of Medicine, London, 1899: Bachelor of Medicine (Honours in Obstetrics) 1894; Member of the Royal College of Surgeons and Licentiate of the Royal College of Physicians (London) 1893; Leeds School of Medicine 1889. Medical Officer of Health, Mansfield Woodhouse Urban District Council; Honorary Surgeon, Mansfield Hospital. Formerly:- Resident Obstetrics Officer, General Infirmary Leeds.


Medical Directory 1919


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Dr. Ernest Henry Houfton was educated at Leeds University, where he gained the entrance medical scholarship in 1889, the junior silver medal in 1880-90, and the Thorpe prize for forensic medicine in 1892. In the following year he obtained the diplomas M.R.C.S., L.R.C.P., and in 1894 graduated M.B., B.S. (London) with honours in obstetrics; he proceeded M.D., in 1899. After holding the appointment of resident obstetric officer to the Leeds General Infirmary he commenced practice in Mansfield in 1903. He was honorary surgeon to the Mansfield Hospital and medical officer of health for the Mansfield Woodhouse Urban District Council. He took an active interest in the Nottingham Division of the British Medical Association; he was a representative in 1913-15 and a deputy representative in 1918-20 and 1925-26. He was vice chairman of the Division in 1920, and was a member for many years of the Contract Practice Sub-Committee of the Medico-Political Committee, and of the Midland Branch Council. He was a member of the Consultative Council on Medical and Allied Services and secretary of the Nott’s Panel Committee


In a tribute to Dr. Houfton by two colleagues they said of him:- Dr. Houfton was a busy and successful general practitioner and an accomplished surgeon. There is no doubt that if he had devoted himself to surgery in his younger days he would have won eminence in that direction. In spite of the pressing demands of a large practice he devoted much time to the service of his fellow practitioners. About twenty five years ago he was concerned in the formation of the Midland Medical Union, as association whose main purpose was to organize the general practitioners in Nottinghamshire and Derbyshire. Much useful work was accomplished until the union ceased to function on the reconstitution of the British Medical Association, the members transferring their energies to the development of the Division of the Association. From that time Dr. Houfton was a thorough “B.M.A. man.” He had been chairman of the Nottingham Division, and he served as representative during the stormy days preceding and following the passing of the 1911 National Health Insurance Act. He was also a member of the Nottingham Insurance Committee, and had served the Local Medical Panel Committee continuously in the position of secretary, also the Contract Practice Subcommittee of the British Medical Association, and was afterwards appointed to the Consultative Council under the then Minister of Health. Much of his time in latter years was spent in the interest of the Mansfield Accident Hospital, where, in addition to his active work as a surgeon, he was always ready to help the board of management with his advice while the hospital was being enlarged.


In the same tribute to Dr. Houfton it was said:- The colliery surgeons of Nottinghamshire and Derbyshire will always remember Dr. Houfton with the deepest gratitude for his untiring efforts on their behalf in their many negotiations with the colliery clubs. Only those closely associated with him in this work can appreciate the devotion with which he laboured for the benefit of his fellow practitioners. He never spared himself in the service of his patients or of his professional brethren.


Finally it was said:- his death at the early age of 54 is a serious loss to the community and to the profession.


B.M.J., July 31st, 1926, pages 228/9.


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