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Royal College presents Honorary Fellowship to award-winning journalist  

20 Mar 2024

Melanie Reid MBE joins new Fellows and Members at the Royal College of Physicians and Surgeons of Glasgow

Award-winning columnist, writer and journalist Melanie Reid MBE has been made an Honorary Fellow of the Royal College of Physicians and Surgeons of Glasgow. 

The award was made at the College’s Diploma Ceremony on Tuesday (19 March) in recognition of her services to journalism and people with disabilities. 

In 2010, Reid broke her neck and fractured her back in a horse-riding accident, paralysing her from the chest down. Reid spent a year in hospital recovering and working towards regaining as much of her mobility as possible.  

Three weeks after her accident she started recording her experiences, and the renowned Spinal Column in The Times Magazine was born. Her book, The World I Fell Out Of, is an account of the year of her accident and those that followed and won the Saltire Non-Fiction Literary Prize 2019. 

Receiving her award, she said: “I wouldn’t be here if it wasn’t for the medical profession. I’m humbled to receive this award.” 

The Honorary Fellowship is awarded by the Royal College for those who have made an outstanding contribution to health. The award was presented at the College’s Diploma Ceremony, which celebrates the achievements of health professionals who are moving on to the next stage of their careers.  

Mike McKirdy, President of the Royal College of Physicians and Surgeons of Glasgow, said: “It is my great pleasure to present Melanie with an Honorary Fellowship. An inspiring advocate for disabled people, her Spinal Column has welcomed us all into her life every week to share her joy, triumphs and struggles through sharp wit and tenacity. Reading of her experiences can inspire us all to think about how we connect with our patients on a human level to provide the best possible care. We are honoured to welcome her into our College community.”

Melanie Reid is an award-winning writer and columnist for The Times. Prior to this, she was an assistant editor for The Herald in Glasgow until 2007.  

Her column has won numerous awards and continues to run every week, and she has become an advocate for disabled people. She also supports spinal medical trials and lectures occasionally to undergraduates and doctors. Committing to openness and honesty about her experiences, Reid shared her diagnosis of breast cancer in January 2023; she has now recovered following a successful surgery.  

She was elected a Fellow of the Royal Society of Edinburgh in 2022. In 2010, she won the Scottish Journalist of the Year and Columnist of the Year award, UK Columnist of the Year in 2011 and in 2014 won the Edgar Wallace Award for Journalism and an Editorial Intelligence Comment Award. In 2015 she was awarded an MBE in the Queen’s Birthday honours for her services to disability and journalism.  

Category: College

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