Published: 16:56, 20 December 2018
| Updated: 10:45, 21 December 2018
Patients and colleagues have paid tribute to a much-loved GP who died suddenly.
Dr Lakshman Kanagasooriam, 61, known as Dr Kana, worked at Whitstable Medical Practice for more than two decades.
The father-of-three died on Wednesday following a sudden collapse.
Dr John Ribchester, a senior partner at the practice, has paid tribute to him, saying: “It is with huge sadness that the partners of Dr Lakshman Kanagasooriam wish to share the tragic news of his sudden death last evening.
"Lakshman joined Whitstable Medical Practice in 1997. He quickly established himself as an excellent GP combining clinical skill with a caring and compassionate manner.
"These talents and his warm personality endeared him to his partners, staff and patients alike.
"Not content with becoming a wonderful GP, he also developed himself as a GP trainer, and a GP with special interest in the fields of mental health and also epilepsy.
"Everyone I have spoken with so far is in a state of shock and distress. Many stories of his skill and kindness are emerging.
"Whitstable Medical Practice is opening a book of condolence. Those wishing to sign this will find it in main reception at Estuary View Medical Centre from Thursday, December 27.
"Dr Kana will be sorely missed, but remembered with affection, by all of us."
Dr Kana leaves behind a wife, Angeline, and three children Jonathan, James and Evangeline.
Cllr Ashley Clark, who was a patient of Dr Kana's for many years, said: "He was one of the kindest, most compassionate, considerate doctors that I have ever encountered, and he will be a great loss to the people of the town.
"He was totally thorough - a total, utter professional and caring in the extreme. I'm personally very, very sad that we've lost him.
"The man was a total saint, really. It's very, very sad - extremely sad for his family. Words cannot express my feelings about what a generally kind, nice individual he was.
"He was my doctor for 20 years, and my father's doctor before that. The work he was involved with at Estuary View, along with the first-rate team there, was fantastic. But as an individual he really stood out.
"There's not another like him, really."
Many of Dr Kana's former patients have taken to social media since news of his death broke, to express their sorrow and share stories of how the GP helped them.
Marijke Rapley wrote: "That man was an outstanding doctor, who always went above and beyond for his patients. He was the one that discovered my dad's cancer, and saved his life. My thoughts and prayers go to his family at this sad time."
Sam Brown wrote: "This is possibly the most devastating news. RIP Dr Kana. You got me through some of the toughest times of my life and I can certainly say I wouldn’t be who I am today without you. Heaven gained an amazing angel today. My thoughts are with his friends and family and colleagues at this deeply sad time."
Whitstable Medical Practice says patients registered with Dr Kana will continue to receive medical care from clinicians at Estuary View Medical Centre, until a new partner is appointed.