Professors Smeeta Sinha, Nick Lees and Dan Horner

New professors recognised for outstanding clinical and research careers

Three NCA colleagues have been awarded MAHSC Honorary Clinical Chairs in recognition of their outstanding clinical and research careers.

The three, all based at Salford, are:

Daniel Horner, Consultant in Emergency and Critical Care Medicine

Prof Dan Horner is a clinical academic with expertise in thrombosis/anticoagulation and a previous Professor of the Royal College of Emergency Medicine. He has co-chaired the thrombosis committee at Salford since 2016 and led the service towards consistently improved outcomes during this period, resulting in recognition and subsequent revalidation as a national exemplar centre. Dan is an expert advisory panel member for multiple NICE guidelines and accompanying quality standards on thrombosis topics, including NG158, NG191, NG200 and QS201

He is also regional theme lead for Trauma and Emergency Care within the NIHR Greater Manchester Clinical Research Network and has an active thrombosis research portfolio. He has research interests in the prevention and treatment of venous thromboembolic disease, coagulopathy in brain injury and early sepsis management in the critically ill. He is co-lead of a new £3M, five-year, NIHR-funded study comparing different methods of pharmacological thromboprophylaxis for patients with temporary lower limb immobilisation after injury to determine their clinical and cost effectiveness.

Nicholas Lees, Consultant General and Colorectal Surgeon

Prof Nick Lees has been a Consultant Colorectal and Intestinal Failure Surgeon in Salford for 20 years. He treats patients referred from around the UK and beyond who have suffered catastrophic complications of previous surgery for conditions like Crohn’s disease and bowel cancer. Leading a large multidisciplinary team, he has developed an international reputation for outstanding clinical outcomes in high-risk colorectal surgical patients.

Throughout his consultant career he has developed an interest in standardising abdominal surgery in high-risk patients, writing many national guidelines. In 2018 he led the Royal College of Surgeons of England expert group that defined how such patients should be treated. The care of all patients undergoing major emergency abdominal surgery in England and Wales is audited nationally against the standards he set, a process that he helps direct, and which is credited with saving hundreds of lives each year. In 2021-2023 he extended those standards, so they now apply internationally and impact on the care received by hundreds of thousands of emergency surgical patients each year world-wide.

During the Covid pandemic he provided national surgical leadership in setting up Enhanced Perioperative Care Units to ease pressure on critical care units while enabling higher risk surgery to safely continue.

In 2022 he co-wrote the national sepsis pathway for the Academy of Medical Royal Colleges, standardising the care of a million patients each year in the UK with serious infections.

Nick has trained and taught extensively throughout his career.

Smeeta Sinha, Consultant Nephrologist

Prof Smeeta Sinha is a Consultant Nephrologist at Salford Royal, the  NHS England National Clinical Director for Renal Medicine and the NHS England Clinical Lead for the Renal Services Transformation Programme.  Her clinical interests are in glomerulonephritis and multi-morbidity. She also leads the complex glomerulonephritis service at Salford Royal.

Her research interests focus on multi-morbidity including diabetic kidney disease, vascular calcification, and rare renal diseases. She is a recognised international key opinion leader in the field of vascular calcification and calciphylaxis and has supported the development of clinical trials including Phase 1 -3 studies. She is the Chief Investigator for the UK Calciphylaxis Study and the UK PI for numerous other randomised controlled trials and studies.

Smeeta is also NCA’s Deputy Director of Research for innovation and improvement and Lead Researcher for NCARC’s renal collection.

The Manchester Academic Health Science Centre (MAHSC) chairs are awarded annually by The University of Manchester’s Faculty of Biology, Medicine and Health Promotions Committee. They are awarded to individuals who have made a major contribution to their clinical specialty, including excellence in research and education.

Professor Phil Kalra, NCA’s Director of Research and Innovation said: “I am delighted to see more NCA colleagues recognised for their clinical expertise and commitment to research and education. A key element of our Research and Innovation strategy is to strengthen the academic focus in all clinical teams, which will support our aim to be an international leader of research, innovation and health improvement across key specialist services. I hope these awards will encourage more colleagues to pursue academic careers and contribute their ideas and experience to support innovation for patient benefit.”

MAHSC, part of Health Innovation Manchester, is a partnership between Greater Manchester’s NHS and academic organisations. It has been designated by NHS England and the National Institute for Health and Care Research for demonstrating excellence in health research, health education and patient care.

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