General internal medicine
Designatory Letters: 
MB Edin 1946, MRCP Edin 1954

(Contributed by James Foster)

Robert Foster was born in Newcastleton, Roxburghshire, and educated at George Heriot’s School, Edinburgh, and Edinburgh University, where he graduated in Medicine in 1946.

After junior posts, he spent two years in National Service in the Royal Navy and then the Royal Navy Reserves. He served first as Surgeon Lieutenant and then Surgeon Lieutenant-Commander, where he was awarded the Reserve Decoration. He returned to Edinburgh in 1953 as Registrar and then Clinical Tutor in Medicine.

In 1957 he joined the Government of Kenya as Senior Medical Specialist and, latterly, Physician to the first President of Kenya. In 1972 he returned to the UK as Head of Clinical Research at 3M-Riker Laboratories. In 1974 he moved to the Rashid Hospital in Dubai as Head of the Medical Department and Physician to the Ruling Family, then in 1977 to Saudi Arabia as Consultant Physician to the King Faisal Hospital, Riyadh. In 1978 he returned to the UK as a Consultant Physician on the Isle of Wight.

Robert Foster published landmark papers on hypertension, megaloblastic anaemia and multiple sclerosis and he led the MRC trials on tuberculosis in Kenya.

He became a member of the Royal College of Physicians of Edinburgh in 1954 and a Fellow in 1969.

He is survived by his wife, three children and six grandchildren.