Seven doctors and a hospital team were honoured last night for their contribution to medicine - in areas such as clinical practice, mentoring and research.

Topping the list was pathologist Tan Puay Hoon of Singapore General Hospital (SGH), who received the National Outstanding Clinician award from the Ministry of Health (MOH).

Professor Tan introduced digital pathology to SGH, allowing experts around the world to discuss a case while viewing digital slides.

Prof Tan has published more than 300 papers and received international recognition after being invited by the World Health Organisation to help edit the WHO Classification of Tumours of the Breast.

For his research efforts on how diabetes affects Asians, Associate Professor Tai E Shyong from the National University Hospital (NUH) was given the National Outstanding Clinician Scientist award.

His work has helped to set up guidelines on who should be screened and how, and whether patients must reduce their cholesterol level.

At the ceremony at Shangri-La Hotel, Health Minister Gan Kim Yong said that it is through translational research that "we can discover better ways to advance healthcare and enhance existing practices, leading to better outcomes".

Singapore supports research in five diseases that have a major impact on healthcare here: cardiovascular diseases, neurological and sense disorders, infectious diseases, metabolic diseases and cancers.

Mr Gan said: "We will also dedicate resources to research on ageing and health services."

Two doctors shared this year's National Outstanding Clinician Mentor award.

Both Dr Koh Tian Hai of the National Heart Centre and Professor Lee Chuen Neng of the National University Health System (NUHS) have mentored some of Singapore's top doctors, including medical director Terrance Chua of the heart centre and transplant surgeon K. Madhavan of NUH.

Mr Gan added: "At its heart, healthcare is delivered by dedicated professionals who contribute in various roles to achieve the best care outcomes and inspire younger colleagues."

The other winners were Professor Lim Shih Hui of the National Neuroscience Institute (National Outstanding Clinician Educator), Associate Professor Thomas Chee of Tan Tock Seng Hospital and Associate Professor James Yip of NUHS (National Outstanding Clinical Quality Champion).

The KK Women's and Children's Hospital team led by Associate Professor Lim Sok Bee won the National Clinical Excellence Team award. Its other members are Dr Sylvia Choo, Mr Tang Hui Nee and Ms Oh Shujun.