Thursday 14 January 2021

Announcing three new Directors of Research
 
The COVID-19 pandemic has shone a spotlight on the importance of intensive care research which is undertaken to help understand critically illness and deliver better care to patients.
 
The Society’s Directors of Research have played vital roles in the advancement of intensive care, and this has increased during the COVID-19 pandemic with many research studies in progress such as REMAP-CAP, GENOMICC, RECOVERY, RECOVERY RS, ISARIC 4C and REALIST.
 
With these achievements in mind, we are proud to announce our three new Directors of Research, Dr Bronwen Connolly, Dr Marlies Ostermann and Professor Manu Shankar-Hari.
 
Dr Bronwen Connolly is Senior Lecturer in Critical Care at Queen’s University Belfast and Honorary Consultant Clinical Research Physiotherapist at Guy’s and St Thomas’ NHS Foundation Trust. Dr Marlies Ostermann is a Consultant in Critical Care & Nephrology at Guy's & St Thomas’ Hospital, London. Professor Manu Shankar-Hari is an NIHR Clinician Scientist and Professor of Critical Care Medicine at Guy’s and St Thomas’ Hospital NHS Foundation Trust.

“Research is vital for determining the most effective treatments for our critically ill patients to maximise their chances of survival and improve their quality of recovery.  As one of the ICS Directors of Research I’m looking forward to continuing to develop and profile the multi-professional and collaborative aspect to our research agenda.” said Dr Bronwen Connolly.

“I look forward to supporting the Intensive Care Society in expanding the research profile further and improving patient care." said Dr Marlies Ostermann. 

“I am honoured to be joining as one of the ICS Directors of Research. ICS plays a central role in our multidisciplinary profession. I look forward to working the wider ICS team to deliver the core research objectives, particularly those within translational research.." said Professor Manu Shankar-Hari.

“We are thrilled to welcome our new Directors of Research to further develop the Society’s research agenda. The intensive care community is made up of multiple professions, each playing an integral role within the critical care team and we are proud to reflect that within our research.”  Said Dr Stephen Webb President of the Intensive Care Society.

The three new Directors will join five existing Directors – Professor Danny McAuley, Professor Gavin Perkins, Professor Anthony Gordon, Dr Kenneth Baillie and Dr Nazir Lone who are already working with the Intensive Care Society. We’re delighted to have them all on board working with the Society to improve patient care and outcomes.

“These appointments will deliver excellent research and mentoring opportunities to all the nurses, allied health professionals and doctors who have delivered excellent patient care under extreme pressures during the pandemic” said Dr Jeremy Bewley, Chair of the Intensive Care Society’s Research Division.

“This was a hugely competitive process with a very high number of excellent applications from across the UK representing the diversity of our multi-professional membership.  I am in no doubt that Bronwen, Manu and Marlies will each bring something new and unique to our research programme and their research leadership will contribute to the ongoing delivery of our five year strategy,” said Dr Sandy Mather, Intensive Care Society Chief Executive.

On January 7 2021 Professor Gordon announced new results from REMAP CAP showing that Tocilizumab achieved a 7.8% reduced mortality in severe COVID pneumonitis and Dr Baillie has recently identified genes that are associated with severe COVID disease which has helped identify further promising therapies.

Much of the research supported by the Intensive Care Society in 2020 and 2021 aims to shed greater light on the COVID-19 pandemic and help to combat its impact, but this is not the only priority of the Society for our Directors.  

Intensive Care research for the advancement of critical care is one of the Society's core priorities. Each year the Society welcomes applications from our multi professional members to our Directors of Research to be considered for a grant enabling them to get their research up and running.
 
All directors will embark on a number of research studies in 2021 with the support of the Intensive Care Society. 
  
All three new Directors of Research were announced during the Intensive Care Society’s council meeting of Tuesday 12 January and take up their positions with immediate effect.