Friday 1 June 2018

Newcastle researcher recognised for medical services to older people

Newly appointed Professor of Clinical Trials in Older People, Miles Witham has been honoured by the Worshipful Society of Apothecaries for his contribution to older people’s medicine.

At a ceremony in London, Professor Miles Witham received the prestigious William Farr Medal; an award given annually to medical practitioners who have made a significant contribution to the management of age related conditions.

The Worshipful Society of Apothecaries was founded by Royal Charter in 1617 and the ceremonial Galen dinner took place on 17th May 2018 at the Society’s Great Hall.

The William Farr Medal dates back to 2006, and previous winners from Newcastle University have included;

  • Lead for the NIHR Newcastle Biomedical Research Centre’s Dementia theme, Professor David Burn, for research into Parkinson’s and neurodegenerative disorders (2012)
  • Director of the Newcastle University Institute for Ageing, Professor Louise Robinson, for work on improving community based dementia care and for research onto Advance Care Planning (2015)

Professor Miles Witham has recently joined Newcastle University as Professor of Clinical Trials in Older People; a post supported by the NIHR Newcastle Biomedical Research Centre which focusses on translational research that aims to improve lives through world class research in ageing and long-term conditions.

Prior to this, he was Clinical Reader in Ageing and Health, University of Dundee, and co-director of the Tayside Clinical Trial Unit. He was nominated for the award by Professor Derek Bell, President of Royal College of Physicians of Edinburgh, and he received it for his contribution to research into improving physical function and quality of life in older people, by targeting multiple pathologies of ageing.

He commented: “I am honoured to receive the William Farr Medal – it is really good to see our work performing trials for older people recognised. My move to the NIHR Newcastle Biomedical Research Centre gives me the opportunity to build further on this work with like-minded colleagues. Older people are still under-represented in clinical trials, and these trials are essential to delivering the best healthcare for older people.”