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A Highgate chief executive who heads up a life-saving team of medics in the NHS has described being made a CBE as “a great honour”.

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Lynda Hamlyn was recognised for services to healthcare as chief executive of NHS Blood and Transplant, the health authority in charge of blood and organ donations.

She said: “It is a great honour to receive this recognition, especially when my life’s work has already given me so much reward.

“Thanks to our wonderful, generous donors and our talented, committed staff, we are able to help save thousands of lives each year.

“Every day the team and I are humbled by the altruism of members of the public who donate to save the lives of complete strangers.”

Ms Hamlyn was appointed chief executive of the blood and transplant division in 2008, but she has worked in the NHS for more than 25 years, having served as chief executive of Northampton and Hertfordshire health authorities.

She was the first women elected to the executive board of the European Blood Alliance in 2012.

In the same month as finding out she had received a CBE, she was also named Chief Executive of the Year by the Health Service Journal in November.

“It has been both a pleasure and a privilege to spend the last six years at NHS Blood and Transplant, which I consider to be one of the best chief executive roles in the NHS,” she said.

“Our loyal donors help ensure a safe and sufficient supply of blood products for patients who desperately need it.

“Everyone who has joined the NHS Organ Donor Register has shown their desire to help others after their life has ended and whether it’s cord blood donations from new mothers or people being willing to donate their bone marrow, every one of our amazing donors makes it an honour to work at NHS Blood and Transplant.”

Also recognised was retired Whittington Hospital medic, Dr Heather Mackinnon, who called for Baby P to be taken away from his mother months before he was killed.

She was made an MBE for services to child protection, paediatrics and child health.

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