Dr Buzz Burrell

GP, Nelson Bays Primary Health, Nelson NZ

Buzz Burrell was born in a small market town in Lancashire, North West England. His passion for life and people took him to London to study Medicine, spending an elective in rural Bangladesh where he worked in remote solo practice, and met his New Zealander wife, Lauren. 

He qualified in 1986, and subsequently trained in internal medicine, attaining Membership of the Royal College of Physicians of Ireland in 1991. He won the inaugural Glaxo-Welcome respiratory research fellowship in Dunedin, New Zealand, and was elected Lecturer of the Year in 1993.


The excitement and challenge of remote rural family medicine saw Buzz change codes, and on completing his research he resurrected a small practice on the West Coast of the South Island, establishing remote clinics and emergency services for the second largest remote area of New Zealand. Within four years Buzz and his partner were elected Runners up New Zealanders of the Year. He was awarded fellowship of the Royal New Zealand College of General Practitioners in 2002.


Buzz has also experienced remote rural practice in Western Australia, and the Chatham Islands. Buzz is a Royal New Zealand College of GP registrar trainer, and senior lecturer with the University of Otago. He has always been involved in innovation, establishing a new centre for the final year Rural Medical Immersion Programme; and working with Curtin University Western Australia on a novel flow meter for asthmatics.

He is a columnist for GP Pulse magazine, has appeared on radio and television, he has written his first yet-to-be-published book, and has written and produced amateur dramatic productions. Buzz and Lauren have three daughters, and any spare time is absorbed by a bach in the Marlborough Sounds, and a small hobby farm where Buzz has lost count of how many animals his kids have.