Co-director, Peter Morris Centre for Evidence in Transplantation
TELL US A BIT ABOUT YOUR ROLE
I am the co-director of the Peter Morris Centre for Evidence in Transplantation. I have overall responsibility for running and managing the Centre. My work is focused on continuing to build our reputation as the world leading knowledge centre for high quality evidence in solid organ transplantation. As such, my team and I are focussed on critically appraising the validity of scientific studies in organ transplantation and translating study results to clinical practice.
To effectively reach transplant professionals around the world I have led the development of the CME-accredited Transplant Library website, which is now globally recognized as the definitive online resource of high-quality evidence on all aspects of solid organ transplantation. The Transplant Library website has been endorsed by many leading transplantation societies around the world. Around 17,000 transplant professionals worldwide subscribe to our monthly Evidence Alerts.
In my role I also conduct systematic reviews and have set up an international network of transplant centres to conduct collaborative reviews. The CET has a partnership with the European Society of Organ Transplantation and as part of the partnership I advise transplantation professionals in Europe on designing clinical trials, and designing and conducting systematic reviews.
I started working for the Centre in 2005 as a research associate. The director at the time appointed me specifically because of my expertise in evidence-based medicine. He made me the liaison to manage our relationships with transplantation societies. This gave me access to a number of influential transplant professionals, which greatly helped me to build my own network. When he retired he promoted me to co-director of our centre. This title added more weight to my position and this allowed me to expand my network. Ever since I have become a guest lecturer, and councillor and committee board member of national and European transplantation societies.
I consider my role critically important for the wider landscape of the Medical Sciences because we influence (clinical) researchers to produce high quality research output, which is essential to maintain the standing of academics in our community and to maintain the trust of the wider public. The Transplant Library website, with its global reach, is a very powerful communication vehicle to help us achieve this.
WHAT IS THE MOST MEANINGFUL ASPECT OF YOUR WORK?
What is most meaningful to me is that our work has a real impact on the quality of the research output from the organ transplantation community, and thereby (indirectly) impacts the quality of patient care.
However, it is also really important to me to be able to teach and educate doctors and scientists on how to critically appraise evidence themselves, and how they can conduct their own systematic reviews.
It is inspiring to meet transplantation professionals at meetings and conferences who tell me how valuable the Transplant Library is and how much they appreciate receiving the monthly overviews with critical commentaries of recent trials. Some tell us that they use our critical commentaries for teaching their students!
We are regularly contacted by doctors and scientists who have attended our course where we teach young professionals how to critically appraise evidence and to conduct a systematic review. To hear that attending the course has given them the confidence to conduct and publish a systematic review on their own is really rewarding.
CAN YOU TELL US ABOUT SOMETHING YOU'VE DONE, CONTRIBUTED TO THAT YOU'RE MOST PROUD OF?
Most recently (In March 2020), I instigated the development of an open-access, COVID-19 extension of the Transplant Library website. This repository includes all published evidence in COVID-19 and solid organ transplantation. Since adding the COVID-19 literature to the Transplant Library, the number of unique visitors has increased by 33% and the monthly page views by 46%.
The user data clearly demonstrate that the open-access repository addresses the need of transplant professionals to have access to a central repository of COVID-19 evidence specific to organ transplantation. I am proud that we have been able to use our unique global presence and reach to distribute essential new information to transplant professionals all over the world who are desperate for the latest evidence that they can trust and rely on during the pandemic.
WHAT CHANGES WOULD YOU MOST LIKE TO SEE IN THE MEDICAL SCIENCES IN THE NEXT 100 YEARS?
What I would most like to see is quite simple: Medical sciences should represent and reflect the diversity of our society. This means an inclusive and diverse division with equal representation of staff at all levels in terms of gender, ethnicity, sexual orientation and disabilities. And equal opportunities for students to study at Oxford. I believe that a diverse and inclusive academic climate will lead to more inclusive research and inclusive education, which will better serve the diverse society we live in.