Judging underway for the 2022 Hippocrates Prize for Poetry and Medicine

Entries have been received for the 2022 Hippocrates Prize for Poetry and Medicine from 32 countries for its FPM-Hippocrates Open and Health Professional Awards and from 22 countries for the Hippocrates Young Poets’ Prize.  These well-established international awards are supported by medical society the Fellowship of Postgraduate Medicine and the Cardiovascular Research Trust the Healthy Heart Charity.

Short-listed and commended poets will be notified in early April. Winners of the FPM-Hippocrates Awards will be announced by the judges at the online Hippocrates Awards Ceremony on 30th May 2022 for which registration is free.

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Awards in the Hippocrates Prize are for an unpublished poem in English of up to 50 lines on a medical theme by entrants from anywhere in the world. Previous winners have come from Canada, Hong Kong, Ireland, New Zealand, the UK and the USA.

With a prize fund of £5500 for winning poems in the Open International category and international health professional category, and £500 for the international Young Poets Award, the Hippocrates Prize is one of the highest value poetry awards in the world for a single poem.

Judges for the 2022 FPM-Hippocrates Prize Open and Health Professional awards are American poet Jeffrey Harrison, British medical researcher Professor Peter Barnes FRS and BBC newsreader, writer and actor Zeb Soanes. European/American author and poet Ellen Hinsey is judge for the Hippocrates Young Poets’ Prize. See more on the judges below.

The International Hippocrates Prize is awarded in three categories:

- a £1000 first prize, £500 second prize and £250 third prize in the FPM-Hippocrates Open category, which anyone in the world may enter. There are a further ~20 commendations in the Open category

- a £1000 first prize, £500 second prize and £250 third prize in the FPM-Hippocrates Health Professional category, which is open to Health Service employees, health students and those working in professional organisations anywhere in the world involved in education and training of health professional students and staff. There are a further ~20 commendations in the Health Professional category

- a £500 award for the Hippocrates Young Poets Prize for an unpublished poem in English on a medical theme. Entries are open to young poets from anywhere in the world aged 14 to 18 years. There are further commendations in the Young Poets category. There is no entry fee for the Young Poets prize.

The Hippocrates Initiative for Poetry and Medicine – winner of the 2011 Times Higher Education Award for Innovation and Excellence in the Arts – is an interdisciplinary venture that investigates the synergy between medicine, the arts and health.

Notes for editors
For more on the 2022 Hippocrates Prize email hippocrates.poetry@gmail.com 

Support for the 2022 Hippocrates Prize

The 2022 FPM-Hippocrates Open Awards and FPM-Hippocrates Health Professional Awards are supported by the Fellowship of Postgraduate Medicine. The FPM, founded in 1918,  is a UK medical society which publishes the international journals the Postgraduate Medical Journal and Health Policy and Technology. 

The 2022 Hippocrates Young Poets Prize is supported by the Cardiovascular Research Trust, a healthy heart charity founded in 1996, which promotes research and education for the prevention and treatment of disorders of the heart and circulation. The charity has a particular interest in avoiding preventable heart disease through educating school students.

2022 Hippocrates Prize Judges

Peter Barnes FRS has been Margaret Turner-Warwick Professor of Medicine at the National Heart and Lung Institute and Honorary Consultant Physician at Royal Brompton Hospital, London since 1987. He was elected a Fellow of the Royal Society in 2007, the first respiratory researcher elected as FRS for over 150 years. He is a Past-President of the European Respiratory Society (2013/14). His research is focused on cellular and molecular mechanisms of asthma and chronic obstructive lung disease (COPD), understanding and developing therapies and research into biomarkers for these diseases. He is involved in multidisciplinary translational research which integrates basic science with clinical studies, thereby providing novel insights into common airway diseases. He qualified at Cambridge and Oxford Universities and he has published over 1000 peer-review papers on asthma, COPD and related topics and has edited over 40 books. 

He is amongst the top 50 most highly cited researchers in the world and has been the most highly cited clinical scientist in the UK and the most highly cited respiratory researcher in the world over the last 20 years. He is an Emeritus National Institute for Health Research Senior Investigator, a Master Fellow of the American College of Chest Physicians and a member of the Academia Europaea. He is also a member of the Council of medical society the Fellowship of Postgraduate Medicine. 

Jeffrey Harrison is the author of six full-length books of poetry, including, most recently, Between Lakes (Four Way Books, 2020), selected as a 2021 Must-Read Poetry Book by the Massachusetts Center for the Book, Into Daylight (Tupelo Press, 2014), winner of the Dorset Prize, Incomplete Knowledge (2006), and Feeding the Fire (2001), which won the Sheila Motton Award from the New England Poetry Club. His first book, The Singing Underneath, was selected by James Merrill for National Poetry Series in 1987. 

A volume of his selected early poems, The Names of Things, was published in the U.K. by the Waywiser Press in 2006. He has received fellowships from the Guggenheim Foundation, the National Endowment for the Arts, and the Bogliasco Foundation, among other honors, and his poems have appeared widely in magazines and anthologies, including Best American Poetry, The Pushcart Prize volumes, Poets of the New Century, The Twentieth Century in Poetry, and been featured regularly in Ted Kooser’s column American Life in Poetry, The Writer’s Almanac, Poetry Daily, and other online and media venues. 

Reviewing Incomplete Knowledge for the Virginia Quarterly Review, critic George David Clark praises Harrison’s “seemingly effortless access to both desperate sorrow and a certain joyous and musical gusto—somewhat paradoxical attitudes Harrison often convincingly achieves within the space of a few lines.”

Jeffrey Harrison has taught at George Washington University, Phillips Academy, the University of Southern Maine, and Framingham State University. He lives in Massachusetts and can also be found at jeffreyharrisonpoet.com.

American poet Ellen Hinsey is judge for the 2022 Hippocrates Young Poets’ Prize for Poetry and Medicine. She is the author of nine books of essays, dialogue, poetry and translation. Her essays on Central and Eastern Europe are collected in Mastering the Past: Contemporary Central and Eastern Europe and the Rise of Illiberalism (2017). Her book-length dialogue with Lithuanian poet and dissident Tomas Venclova, Magnetic North explores post-war Lithuanian and Eastern European culture and ethics under totalitarianism. Hinsey's other books include: The Illegal AgeUpdate on the Descent, which draws on her experience at the International Criminal Tribunal for the Former Yugoslavia in the Hague, The White Fire of Time and Cities of Memory (Yale University Series Award). Her work has appeared in publications such as The New York Times, The New Yorker, Poetry Review, The Irish Times and Poetry, among others. She is a former fellow of the American Academy in Berlin and the DAAD Kunstlerprogam in Berlin. She is the international correspondent for the New England Review and is currently a senior editor at the New American Studies Journal (Göttingen).

Zeb Soanes is a newsreader and reassuring voice of the Shipping Forecast to millions of listeners on BBC Radio 4. He is a regular on The News Quiz, has reported for From Our Own Correspondent, read for Poetry Please and presented Saturday Classics on BBC Radio 3. He has announced some of the biggest events in recent years from the final result of the Brexit referendum and the election of Donald Trump to the unfolding of the Coronavirus pandemic. Sunday Times readers voted him their favourite male voice on UK radio. At literary festivals including Hay and Edinburgh he regularly chairs discussions with best-selling authors including Francesca Simon, Patrick Gale and David Walliams. His long association with The Shipping Forecast has led him to read it from the top of a lighthouse, at the closing ceremony of the Beijing Olympics and to open London Fashion Week.

He studied Creative Writing and Drama at UEA and has written for The Observer, Country Life and The Literary Review.  In 2019, St Martin in the Fields commissioned him to rewrite the libretto for Vaughan Williams’ 1958 nativity pageant, The First Nowell, presented as a charity gala.He trained as an actor and has performed in BBC radio dramas with Simon Russell-Beale and Toby Jones.  He played Derek Nimmo in the story of the classic BBC comedy series All Gas and Gaiters and was the sinister librarian to David Warner’s Doctor Who for Big Finish Productions. In the short film, Mayday, starring Juliet Stevenson, he relayed the unfolding chaos of an earthquake in London. During the 2020 coronavirus lockdown he created celebriTEAS, a comedy podcast, impersonating his theatrical heroes to raise money for the Equity Benevolent Fund and Acting for Others which received praise from Russell Davies and Stephen Fry.

His best-selling first book for children, Gaspard the Fox, inspired by his remarkable encounters with an urban fox, was published in May 2018, illustrated by James Mayhew.  It was followed by Gaspard Best in Show (2019). The latest adventure, Gaspard’s Foxtrot (2021), was conceived as both a book and narrated concert work, composed by Jonathan Dove, which received its world premiere at the 2021 Three Choirs Festival.

Zeb is an active patron of Awards for Young Musicians and the British Association of Performing Arts Medicine. In recognition of his efforts to culturally rehabilitate the urban fox through his books, he was appointed the first patron of The Mammal Society. He regularly supports the work of St Martin in the Fields with homelessness and, in 2017, hosted a gala auction of theatrical portraits of the Kenneth Branagh Theatre Company, raising over a hundred thousand pounds. In his hometown of Lowestoft he is a committed supporter of the Samaritans.

Organisers of the Hippocrates Initiative for Poetry and Medicine
Professor Donald Singer is a clinical pharmacologist and President of the Fellowship of Postgraduate Medicine. His interests include public understanding of drugs, health and disease and prevention and treatment of disorders of the heart, brain and circulation. Professor Michael Hulse is a poet and translator of German literature. 
Until 2020, he taught poetry and comparative literature at the University of Warwick. He has won the National Poetry Competition and is the only poet to have won the Bridport Poetry Prize twice. He  has also translated more than sixty books from the German, including titles by Goethe, Rilke, Jakob Wassermann, Alfred Andersch, W. G. Sebald, and Nobel Laureates Elfriede Jelinek and Herta Müller. His translations have been shortlisted for every major translation award, including the PEN Translation Prize (US), the Aristeion Translation Prize and the Schlegel-Tieck Prize. 

onion © Hippocrates initiative 2012: hippocrates.poetry@gmail.com