'An incredible man' - tributes pour in for lifesaving Edinburgh Neonatal doctor

Tributes have flooded in for Dr Gopi Menon, who cared for premature children in Edinburgh and the Lothians for 25 years.

Wednesday, 4th September 2019, 4:18 pm
Updated Wednesday, 4th September 2019, 5:18 pm
Dr Gopi Menon (centre) is remembered as kind and compassionate. Source: JPI Media.

Gopi Menon, was a consultant paediatrician specialising in intensive care of the newborn, looking after premature children in the lothians for 25 years.

He is remembered by friends, colleagues and UK professionals as a calm dedicated doctor. For patients, Dr Menon is remembered as a kind and a vital source of support in the most challenging times of their lives.

On Facebook, Lee Picken commented, “A wonderful man and such a touching tribute from Ben Stenson. He was instrumental in saving my daughter’s life and also a major factor in saving my sanity on many occasions.

“My family owe him a massive debt of gratitude and my thoughts are with his family, friends and colleagues.”

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Donna Robertson commented, “This is the Dr who picked me up from a lift floor and hugged me tightly after I ran out of the NICU due to my premature Son having a bad day. Such a caring and wonder man.”

Tracy Morgan said, “He looked after my daughter when she was born prem. Thanks to him she is now a thriving 12 year old.”

“An incredible man that saved so many little lives one of them was my son 9 years ago. He told it how it was even if it was hard to hear. Gave us strength to care for our son and carry on. He will be missed by all who knew him. RIP dr menon.” said Giovanna Andreucci

“Rest in peace and thoughts with his family. He cared for our son, and us while we were in the unit. Lovely man and an excellent Santa at the units Christmas do.” said Nicola Robertson.

In 1988, Dr Gopi became honorary senior registrar in paediatrics in Edinburgh, and in 1994 was appointed to the post of consultant neonatologist at the Simpson Memorial Maternity Hospital.

Dr Gopi worked in the high risk intensive care unit, in both the old Simpson and the new Simpson Centre for Reproductive Health, and was a key part of the leadership which looked after 15,000 sick babies ­during his time as a consultant.

He was instrumental in setting up new services, including a joint respiratory clinic with the Royal Hospital for Sick Children. In his commitment to wider neonatal issues in Scotland, he developed a national system for monitoring the health of babies, a minimum dataset, which is now standard for the Scottish Neonatal Consultant Group.

He was a passionate advocate for babies and their parents in the UK. He about a became the honorary secretary and then president of the British Association of Perinatal Medicine (BAPM). He represented BAPM on the boards of the National Neonatal Audit Programme and the Neonatal Data Analysis Unit , and lead the BAPM’s Neonatal Service Quality Indicators and many more documents designed for the improvement of services and life.

Outside of professional accomplishments, Dr Gopi was an enthusiastic amateur actor. He loved to take to the stage and bring a smile to whoever wanted it.

Dr Menon passed from pancreatic cancer on 21 August 2019 in Edinburgh, aged 64. He is survived by his wife Val, two daughters Natasha and Jessica, and his younger brother Anand and mother Lakshmi.