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Saturday, 12 November 2011

Broadcaster Martha Kearney joins judges for 2012 Hippocrates Awards for Poetry and Medicine

@HealthMed BBC broadcaster and journalist Martha Kearney has joined New York poet and critic Marilyn Hacker and medical scientist Professor Rod Flower FRS to complete the judging panel for the 2012 Hippocrates Awards for Poetry and Medicine.
Martha Kearney, Marilyn Hacker and Rod Flower, FRS.

In its first 2 years, the Hippocrates Prize attracted over 3000 entries from 32 countries, from the Americas to Fiji and Finland to Australasia.

The Hippocrates poetry and medicine initiative was co-founded by a team from the University of Warwick, supported by several external organizations interested in medicine and the arts. 

The Hippocrates initiative was named winner of the Award for Excellence and Innovation in the Arts in the 2011 Times Higher Education awards, announced 24th November 2011 in London. This award aims to recognise the collaborative and interdisciplinary work that is taking place in universities to promote the arts.

Entries are now closed for the 2012 Hippocrates Prize for poetry and medicine, which is for unpublished poems in English.

With a 1st prize for the winning poem in each category of £5,000, the Hippocrates prize is one of the highest value poetry awards in the world for a single poem. In each category there is also a 2nd prize of £1,000, 3rd  prize of £500, and 20 commendations each of £50. 

Medicine may be interpreted in the broadest sense. Themes for prize entries may include the nature of the body and anatomy; the history, evolution, current and future state of medical science; the nature and experience of tests; the experience of doctors, nurses and other staff in hospitals and in the community. 

Other topics might include experience of patients, families, friends and carers; experiences of acute and long-term illness, dying, birth, cure and convalescence; the patient journey; the nature and experience of treatment with herbs, chemicals and devices used in medicine.

Awards are in an Open category, which anyone in the world may enter, and an NHS category, which is open to UK National Health Service employees, health students and those working in professional organisations involved in education and training of NHS students and staff.

Awards will be presented in London on Saturday May 12th 2012, at the 3rd International Symposium on Poetry and Medicine, to be held at the Wellcome Collection rooms in London.

Marilyn Hacker's book of poetry Presentation Piece (1974) won the National Book Award. In 2009, she won the PEN Award for Poetry in Translation for King of a Hundred Horsemen by Marie √Čtienne. In 2010, she received the PEN/Voelcker Award for Poetry.

Rod Flower is Professor of Biochemical Pharmacology at the WIlliam Harvey Research Institute[21] in London. His main scientific research interests concern inflammation and anti-inflammatory drug mechanisms. He was formerly President of the British Pharmacological Society and is a Fellow of the Academy of Medical Sciences.

Martha Kearney is the main presenter for BBC Radio 4’s lunchtime news programme ‘The World at One’. She previously worked for Channel 4, presented the BBC’s Woman’s Hour, Today and PM and was political editor for Newsnight.  She has been commended for her national and international reporting, including for work on child poverty. She has been a judge for the Webb Essay Prize and the Guardian First Book Award, and has chaired the judging panel for the Orange Prize for Fiction.  

Marilyn Hacker said: ‘The enormous scope and the intense focus provided by this conjunction combine to entice and hold a reader's attention. The poems I read from the 2011 submissions touched basic and utterly complex human issues, with extreme attention and with admirable verbal bravura. I look forward to reading the new ones.’ 

Rod Flower observed that ‘poetry can reconnect us with ourselves, and with the outside world, in a way that promotes a feeling of well-being and acceptance…and in some mysterious way, poetry enables us to gain traction on the conflicting emotions stirred up by the suffering of disease or the triumph of the cure.’

He added that ‘As a professional pharmacologist with a deep interest in the discovery and use of new medicines to mitigate the ravages of disease, I am delighted to be amongst the panel of judges this year and am eagerly anticipating the challenge of enjoying – and assessing – this year’s entries.’  

The 2012 Awards are supported by the Fellowship of Postgraduate Medicine and the Cardiovascular Research Trust.
The Hippocrates initiative for poetry and medicine was co-founded by clinician and medical researcher Professor Donald Singer and poet and translator Michael Hulse. The 2012 awards are co-organized by humanities researcher Sorcha Gunne.
See also 
- Register for the 12th May International Symposium on Poetry and Medicine

Poems entered are to be of no more than 50 lines and submitted online, accompanied by an entry fee (£6 per poem). 
Judging of submissions will be anonymised.
The deadline for submissions is 31st January 2012.
For more details please visit the website

The Fellowship of Postgraduate Medicine is a national medical society founded in 1918 and publisher of the Postgraduate Medical Journal and Health Policy and Technology.

The Cardiovascular Research Trust is a charity founded in 1996, which promotes research and education for the prevention and treatment of disorders of the heart and circulation. The charity founded Healthy Heart Awards for schools and colleges.

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