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Medical book awards

open book

The BMA medical book awards takes place annually to recognise outstanding contributions to medical literature.

Prizes are awarded in 20 categories, with an overall BMA Medical book of the year award taken from the category winners.

  • How to enter

    Applications to the 2020 awards are now closed.  The awards are currently suspended because of the current COVID-19 health crisis.  Applicants will be updated as soon as possible about changes to the timetable for the 2020 awards. You can register as an applicant to future awards on our SMA (SurveyMonkey Apply) system.

    If you have any questions about entry or the awards, please contact Richard Jones in the BMA Library on [email protected] for further information.

    Please ensure you read our conditions of entry below.


    We have special awards for the following categories

    • BMA Student Textbook Award
    • BMA Young Authors Award
    • BMA Council Chair's Choice
    • BMA President's Choice award

    See all our book awards categories

  • Conditions of entry

    1. The awards are open to all publishers of medical and health books except the BMA and BMJ Publishing Group.
    2. All titles must have been published in 2019.
    3. Subsequent editions of titles which have won special awards or category first prizes may not be entered again, although new editions of titles which have been commended or highly commended may be entered.
    4. All titles must be available in the United Kingdom.
    5. All titles must be in English.
    6. Titles must not contain a significant authorial or editorial contribution from a current member of BMA or BMJ staff.
    7. A separate entry form must be completed for each title, including details of its intended readership and educational aims.
    8. Entries may be entered into one category only. The organisers of the awards may reassign entries to more appropriate categories.
    9. Two copies must be submitted of each title.
    10. Entries are not returnable and may be added to the stock of the BMA library or otherwise disposed of.
    11. Publications must be sent to the BMA library at the entrant’s expense.
    12. The publisher of each winning title and of any title that appears on each short list will receive a PDF certificate and shall be entitled to use the awards result on all advertising and promotional activity. Additional certificates may be purchased from the BMA.
    13. Texts on nursing or dentistry will not be accepted. Serials are likewise not eligible for entry although annual updates will be considered.
  • Winners of the 2019 Medical Book Awards

    BMA president, Professor Raanan Gillon FRCP (Lond) Hon DSc (Oxon), was the guest of honour at the 2019 awards at BMA House on Tuesday 3rd September 2019.

    See the winners of the 2019 awards


  • How the awards are judged

    Our judging panel awards books for their applicability to audience, production quality and originality.

    All entries are individually reviewed and appraised by doctors and educators who are interested in medical publishing.

    Preliminary reviewing takes place during March and April. Reviewers are asked to consider accuracy, currency, originality, book production quality and whether the title meets the needs of its audience.

    The appraisals and the books themselves are then evaluated by specialist panels in May and June, arriving at short listing recommendations for a winner and highly commended awards in each category. Final judging usually takes place in June.

    The panel consists of the BMA Chairman of Council, the President, and the Librarian. They review the shortlisting panels’ recommendations and select the BMA Medical book of the year.


    Apply to be a reviewer

    Reviewers are assessed by two simple criteria: length of review and speed. These assessments are used to determine allocations in future years.

    Length of review

    Excellent: More than 15 sentences (in total) for any of the criteria
    Standard: Between five and 15 sentences (in total) for any of the criteria
    Poor: No comments or up to five sentences only (in total) for any of the criteria


    Excellent: By first deadline given in mail out
    Standard: By first reminder deadline
    Poor: No response or response only after first reminder deadline

    Reviewers are able to keep the books which they appraise.

    If you are interested in becoming a reviewer, please apply to be a reviewer using the online form.

    For more information, please email [email protected]