A Norfolk hospital consultant has been awarded an OBE in the Queen's Birthday Honours list for his pioneering contributions to improving patient safety.

Dr Peter Young, who works in anaesthetics and critical care at King's Lynn's Queen Elizabeth Hospital, qualified in 1990.

He has specialised in innovation and the development of medical devices which serve to improve patient safety alongside his clinical work.

A married father of four, Dr Young has been honoured for ‘services to innovation and the prevention of never events in the NHS’, which acknowledges his work in finding solutions to overcome preventable medical incidents.

He was part of the founding team behind King’s Lynn Institute for Patient Safety (KLIPS), which has spent the last 20 years designing and testing devices which reduce risk in all areas of healthcare.

Dr Young first learned about the honour some weeks ago, but was under strict instructions to keep the news confidential, as is protocol when someone is selected to be acknowledged by Her Majesty.

He said: “It was certainly a bit of a shock to read it at first. In fact, I thought it might be a mistake.

“I’ve had to keep pinching myself to believe this is happening to me, as it’s not something you set out in your career ever assuming will come your way. In many ways, it feels odd to be singled out.

“To me, medicine is such a team sport, and I find myself being recognised for something I do out of complete passion for the work, and alongside a great team of people who are all so committed to improving safety and solutions for our patients.”

QEH chief executive Caroline Shaw said: “On behalf of all those who work at the Queen Elizabeth Hospital, and all those who have benefited from Dr Young’s commitment and innovation, I congratulate Peter and look forward to seeing him receive this honour in due course.”

An official date for Dr Young’s award ceremony is yet to be confirmed, although he anticipates it may be several more months.

In the meantime, he intends to have some particularly special family celebrations with his family this Jubilee weekend.