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  • Free
  • Discussion
  • British Sign Language
  • Speech-to-text
  • Hearing loop

What you’ll do

Watch a recording of Gavin Francis, author and GP, in conversation with Michael Rosen, one of the UK’s best-known children’s authors, to find out why they think Britain’s health service is worth saving.   

They share professional and deeply personal perspectives on Covid as well as discussing what recovery really means, both for individuals experiencing illness and for the NHS as an institution in crisis.  

The conversation is facilitated by Dame Elizabeth Anionwu, Emeritus Professor of Nursing at the University of West London.

The event took place in our building and was livestreamed on our YouTube channel.

Gavin Francis is author of ‘Free for All: Why the NHS is Worth Saving’ and ‘Recovery’, published by Wellcome Collection.

Michael Rosen is author of ‘Many Different Kinds of Love: A Story of Life, Death and the NHS’ and ‘Getting Better’, published by Ebury Press.



Need to know


We’ll be in the Henry Wellcome Auditorium. To get there, take the stairs or the lift down to level −1. The auditorium is fitted with a hearing loop.

British Sign Language

This event is British Sign Language interpreted. An interpreter will be visible to all attendees, in the building and online. They will interpret what is discussed into BSL for d/Deaf, hard of hearing and deafened attendees.


This event will be live-transcribed, which may be useful for people who are D/deaf, hard of hearing, deafened or neurodivergent. The captions will be displayed on a large screen in-venue. Ticketholders for the livestream will receive a link to view the captions in a separate window.

Hearing loop

There will be a hearing loop at this event.

For more information, please visit our Accessibility page. If you have any queries about accessibility, please email us at access@wellcomecollection.org or call 0 2 0. 7 6 1 1. 2 2 2 2

Our event terms and conditions

About your contributors

Photograph of Gavin Francis

Gavin Francis


Dr Gavin Francis has worked across four continents as a surgeon, emergency physician, medical officer with the British Antarctic Survey and latterly as a GP. He’s the author of the Sunday Times-bestselling ‘Adventures in Human Being’ and ‘Recovery’, as well as ‘Shapeshifters’ and ‘Intensive Care’. He also writes for the Guardian, The Times, the London Review of Books and Granta.

Michael Rosen

Michael Rosen


Michael Rosen is one of the best-known figures in the children’s book world. He is renowned for his work as a poet, performer, broadcaster and scriptwriter. He is Professor of Children’s Literature at Goldsmiths, University of London and visits schools with his one-man show to enthuse children with his passion for books and poetry. In 2007 he was appointed Children’s Laureate, a role which he held until 2009. While Laureate, he set up The Roald Dahl Funny Prize. He currently lives in London with his wife and children.

Black and white photograph of Elizabeth Anionwu

Elizabeth Anionwu


Dame Elizabeth Anionwu is Emeritus Professor of Nursing at the University of West London. In 1979 she became the first UK sickle cell nurse counsellor, based in Brent, London.