News and events

Site search and information for professionals menu
A film crew interviewing a junior doctor

News and events

Whether you want to get involved in an upcoming event, or would like to know about the latest developments at Epsom and St Helier – we have all the information you need.

You can also follow us on Twitter and like us on Facebook.  

Below are the latest news stories from our staff and hospitals. If you have any questions, please call the Communications Team – details are on the right.  

Hospital consultant inspired to help others improve their health after having a ‘mini stroke’

An emergency doctor who was rushed to hospital in 2019 after a major health scare was spurred on to better his lifestyle – and has now penned a book about his experience to help others.

Dr Asif Mushtaq vowed to improve his health after suffering a transient ischaemic attack (TIA) – more commonly known as a "mini stroke" – about four years ago. At the time he weighed 104kg (16st 5lb) and was classed as obese.

The consultant recalls he was sitting down at home before suddenly finding he could not move his leg or arm. His wife pushed him to ring 999, and an ambulance took him to hospital, where scans revealed the TIA.

“I was really surprised as I thought I was healthy,” said Dr Mushtaq, who works in Epsom Hospital’s emergency department.

“Clearly this wasn’t the case, though, and it was at that point that I decided I needed to change my lifestyle. As a family person, it was time to reflect.”

There were, however, setbacks. First was the crash diet that resulted in Dr Mushtaq putting the weight he’d lost back on, then Covid and lockdown came along.

Long hours and a busy work schedule also meant he was stuck in a cycle of snacking at work, before going home and over-indulging. But finally, in 2021, he decided enough was enough and it was “time I took action”.

“Physically I recovered quickly from the TIA, but psychologically and mentally it hit me quite hard,” said Dr Mushtaq.

“The desperation was there. My illness was the driving force, and from that point it took five or six months to get into shape. I surprised myself, and friends, colleagues and family were impressed, asking me what the secret was.”

Encouraged by this interest, Dr Mushtaq decided he wanted to write a book about his weight-loss – which he achieved through practical and realistic steps such as walking more, going to the gym, and changing his eating habits.

That book encourages people to lose weight in a “balanced and sensible” way, and is available from Amazon.

“Losing weight actually wasn’t very hard, but writing a book took longer,” said Dr Mushtaq, whose BMI is now in the healthy range. “I had to do all the research and write in a way that non-medical people can understand. I’m very happy with the way it’s come out, as I did find it quite difficult.

“It’s helped many people, including colleagues, and it’s so satisfying when I see other people getting their health back and getting fit. I’m happy I’ve started that journey and am able to share my experience.

“Since I’ve started my health journey I feel much better, and my mental health has also improved. I should have started much earlier, and if I had known what to do and how to get healthier, I would have done.”

If you're overweight, losing weight has many health benefits, and making small, simple changes will help.

The NHS’s Better Health has free tools and support, and information on how to improve your physical and mental health. Find out more here:

The NHS website also advises on what to do if you or someone you know is experiencing symptoms of a stroke or TIA.

It’s important to call 999 immediately and ask for an ambulance if you or someone else has symptoms, which can be remembered with the word FAST:

  • Face – the face may have dropped on one side, the person may not be able to smile, or their mouth or eye may have dropped.
  • Arms – the person may not be able to lift both arms and keep them raised because of weakness or numbness in one arm.
  • Speech – their speech may be slurred or garbled, or the person may not be able to talk at all, despite appearing to be awake; they may also have problems understanding what you're saying to them.
  • Time – it's time to call 999

Find out more here:

Get connected

  • Like us on Facebook 
  • Follow us on Twitter
  • Follow us on LinkedIn 
  • Reviews on NHS Choices
  • Watch our videos


  • Like us on Facebook
  • Follow us on Twitter 
  • Follow us on LinkedIn
  • Review on NHS Choices
  • Watch our videos

NHS image placement

Healthy Workplace Achievement Award 2016 NHS Choices

This website uses cookies to improve your experience. For information on cookies and how you can disable them, please read our cookies policy.

Change cookie settings: