01 Mar 2023

Bhaskar Bhowal

23rd October 1961 – 22nd December 2022

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Obituary by Clare Wildin, Aamer Ullah and Joe Dias on behalf of Bhaskar’s Leicester colleagues

Bhaskar Bhowal Obituary JTO


Bhaskar was naturally smart and a master of fine detail who never wrote with anything but a Mont Blanc pen. He qualified from Calcutta Medical College in 1984. At medical school he was the Culture Secretary, his love of music and fine food continued throughout his life. In 1991, he came to the UK to work at Morriston Hospital, Swansea, meeting Phil Matthews who sparked his interest in hand surgery.

He was appointed as a Registrar in Leicester in 1993. Here he really developed his love of all things ‘British’, especially a good steak and going to ‘the pub’.

After his fellowship in Wrightington he was appointed as a Consultant Orthopaedic Surgeon at the University Hospitals of Leicester in 1999. Bhaskar never considered himself ‘the expert’ even though he was. He worked closely with his colleagues, shared opinions and co-operating on difficult cases. He evolved the paediatric hand surgery clinics with our plastic surgery colleagues and forged close working relationships with rheumatology and neurology. Bhaskar was a strong partner in all Leicester research activity, he was Principal Investigator for several National Institute for Health and Care Research studies on scaphoid fractures and Dupuytren’s disease and published numerous papers which have changed the treatment pathways for many hand and wrist conditions.

Bhaskar’s true passion has always been with education. When aged 16 he was awarded the National Talent Search Scholarship by National Council for Educational Research and Training by the Indian Government, he delivered on his potential becoming East Midlands Deanery Training Program Director, Deputy Head of School of Surgery and Trauma and Orthopaedic SAC member. He was very proud of his trainees achieving an exemplary pass rate for the FRCS T&O exam. He co-authored the T&O curriculum for the General Medical Council, led on Technology Enhanced Learning and helped develop the BOA training course for supervisors. He helped run the Leicester Hand Fracture Course for over two decades and sadly only missed the last course because of ill health.

Bhaskar was much loved by all his colleagues in Leicester and was deeply involved with the Bengali community who regarded him as family. Bhaskar was supportive, obsessive, mischievous, kind and very often infuriating. His optimism was infectious. Despite his own health problems, he made us all smile.

He was a dear friend and colleague and we miss him greatly.