Published: 14/03/2002, Volume II2, No. 5796 Page 8

The former chief executive of the National Association of Primary Care has is to become a Church of England priest.

Clive Parr, who has been NAPC chief executive since its formation in 1998, took retirement last autumn to undergo ordination.He has passed the final stage in that process and should become a priest - assisting a vicar - next year.

Mr Parr has spent nearly all his career to date in the NHS. His last NHS post was Hereford and Worcester family health services authority chief executive. He became general manager of the National Association of Fundholding Practices in 1996 and NAPC chief executive when the NAFP merged with the Association of Independent Multifunds.

He said: 'I was a lay reader since the late 1980s and I have had a number of suggestions that I might consider ordination. I am pleased to say that - it takes about 18 months - I finally cleared the last hurdle two weeks ago. I am now an ordinand.'

Mr Parr said that on qualifying as a priest he would work supporting a parish priest (vicar) or at an institution such as a prison.

Although he has stepped down as NAPC chief executive, he is continuing to undertake consultancy work for the NAPC.

Mr Parr was replaced as NAPC chief executive by Eric McCullough, who has worked for many years as a manager with Eastern health and social services board in Northern Ireland.