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Rasiah Somasundaram Thiagarajah (“RS,” as he was popularly known among his friends) came to the United Kingdom after working in Sri Lanka as a paediatrician. After further training in the UK, he rapidly rose to the position of medical director and lead clinician. Having made a niche for himself by developing a comprehensive service in autism, child abuse, and attention deficit disorder, he began to attract referrals from well outside his catchment area.
Clarity in thought and decisiveness in action made him a formidable figure among his peers and colleagues.
His readiness to champion the cause and improve the lot of the junior doctors who came under his purview endeared him to many. Ever an enthusiastic participant in Tamil cultural activities, he was also noted for his loyal support to his old school in the north of Sri Lanka.
He is survived by his wife, Susheila, and two sons, Prashan and Ajantha.
Former consultant paediatrician and medical director (1995-2005) Wakefield and Pontefract NHS Trust (b 11 October 1938; q Colombo Medical Faculty, Sri Lanka, 1963; DCH, FRCP Edin, London, Ireland), died from lung cancer on 25 September 2007, aged 68.