Blog posts

Institute of Global Health Innovation (IGHI) news round-up

IGHI participates in the World Economic Forum 2014

Global leaders join forces with academics from IGHI at an IdeasLab session at the 2014 World Economic Forum.

The World Economic Forum brings together top business leaders, international politicians, academics and journalists to discuss the most pressing challenges facing the world. IdeasLab sessions allow experts from the world’s leading universities to address specific issues of importance with a high profile audience.

Lord Darzi receives Qatari honour

On 16 January, His Highness the Emir, Sheikh Tamim bin Hamad Al Thani  conferred upon Lord Darzi the Sash of Independence in recognition of his continuing contribution to developing the health sector in Qatar.

IGHI PhD application deadline – 2 March 2014

The PhD programme is open to UK/EU and overseas students. The funding is for three years and covers both fees and living expenses. Research progress is assessed each year and continuing receipt of funds will depend on satisfactory academic progress.

 

Imanova imaging sciences centre annual report

logoImanova Limited is a world-leading research centre for imaging sciences housed in the Burlington Danes building on the Hammersmith Hospital campus. They undertake imaging science research and biomarker development, whilst considering the valuable application of this in early drug development.

Formed in an innovative alliance between Imperial College London, King’s College London, UCL and the UK’s Medical Research Council in 2011, the facility holds world-class capabilities and a collaborative environment for both academics and commercial clients. Imanova benefits from state-of-the-art technology including scanning equipment (as featured in the video below), radio-ligand development and manufacture, and imaging research methodology.

Imanova’s imaging research includes Magnetic Resonance Imaging (MRI) and Positron Emission Tomography (PET) studies, which can be used to image the body’s internal structures and the movement of molecules within the body providing valuable insight for researchers. Whilst the technology can be used in a number of research areas, it is often used in neurology to understand the innermost activities of the brain. The Imperial Division of Brain Sciences works closely with Imanova, which hosts a number of Imperial research studies in neuroscience and mental health.

Imanova also has radiochemical sciences capabilities, meaning radiotracers can be both developed and utilised in-house. Their research in biomarker development uses a structured process involving the design of radio-labelled probes for specific biological targets, in silico selection of leading candidates and clinical validation of the biomarker.

The centre conducts a number of research projects for commercial clients also, providing a means to test early stage drugs in first-in-human trials. Using radio-labelled compounds, PET imaging can allow researchers to study drugs under development to discover how these distribute in the body, whether they are reaching their target and at what concentration. Conversely, MRI can be used to determine structural changes and to visualise brain activation during tasks using functional MRI (fMRI).

Throughout Imanova’s first 18 months a number of outstanding achievements have been accomplished, including:

  • Establishing research assignments with over 150 researchers, including over 80 Imperial researchers,
  • Having over 100 clinical studies at various stages of evolution,
  • Introducing 13 ‘good manufacturing practice’ (GMP) tracers,
  • Making significant progress in delivering commercial studies with six new customers,
  • Publishing 21 peer reviewed articles and 11 platform presentations at the Society of Nuclear Medicine and Molecular Imaging Meeting in 2013,
  • Achieving financial promises for the 2013 financial year.

You can now download the first annual report for Imanova Limited. For further details, please contact enquiries@imanova.co.uk or 020 8008 6000.

Cycle theft – notification from Support Services

A notification from Support Services:

There has been an increase in cycle theft in the South Kensington area and the concentration of cycles on campus make the college a prime target.

Over 95% of cycles stolen on Campus in 2013 have been because cycles owners are buying locks that can be removed in seconds , particularly cable locks, chains and padlocks.  The Security Department have been buying “ABUS Granite X plus” locks in bulk and discounting them to staff and students at a price of £30.

These locks normally retail  between £70 and £80 and in the three years that we have been selling these locks  we have had no reports of locks being cut through. If you wish to purchase one please go to Room 155 in the Sherfield Building.

You can also have your cycle security marked in Room 155  free of charge.

The Security Team is also working with the local Police Team to look at what other measures can be implemented to reduce cycle theft on Campus.

If you see anyone acting suspiciously around cycles on Campus please call Security immediately on 4444 or 02075891000 from a mobile

MSk Lab – January 2014 Update

The MSkLab is taking part in an offshoot of the highly acclaimed and successful TEDMED meetings. We are one of the participants taking part in the off-shoot called The Cell, which is being held at the Royal Albert Hall and Alexander Fleming Building (Imperial). It is to showcase, and centred round, innovative healthcare technologies. Professor Cobb and Mr Gupte will speaking at the event. Further details can be found at: http://www.tedmedlivelondon.com/the-cell-patricipants/4578930790

 

The Great Debate (International Orthopaedic Conference) run by the MSk Lab is joining forces with a large European orthopeadic conference EFORT and running sessions within the main programme. 4th and 5th June at ExCEL.

 

New edition of the Lab Report is now out: http://www1.imperial.ac.uk/msklab/news_blog/

Zoe Williams
Public Engagement and Patient Involvement Manager
MSk Lab

 

SCI receive $750k grant

schisto

Schistosomiasis Control Initiative (DIDE, School of Public Health) have received a core grant of $750,000 from Good Ventures; a Foundation in USA.

Founded in 2011, Good Ventures’ mission is to help humanity thrive. Our early grantmaking will focus on researching, supporting and promoting cost‐effective approaches to improving quality of life worldwide, advancing public policies that protect or expand personal freedom, and increasing the impact of philanthropy by encouraging effectiveness and transparency across the social sector. Good Ventures is a supporting organization to the Silicon Valley Community Foundation.

Institute of Global Health Innovation – January 2014 Update

IGHI blog image

World Innovation Summit for Health, 10th and 11th December, Doha, Qatar

Building on the success of its inaugural Summit, the Institute of Global Health Innovation (IGHI) have collaborated with the Qatar Foundation to host the World Innovation Summit for Health (WISH) in Doha, Qatar.  This two day meeting gathered a distinguished audience of decision-makers and influencers from across the world to discuss practical, lasting and innovative solutions to global healthcare challenges.

Before the summit, teams of international experts drawn from academia, industry and policy were commissioned to carry out policy research into eight topics: accountable care, antimicrobial resistance, big data and health, end-of-life care, mental health, obesity, patient engagement, and road traffic injury and trauma care. Their findings were reported at the summit.

Sir Thomas Hughes-Hallett, Executive Chair of the IGHI at Imperial, chaired the forum on end-of-life care. “How we care for the dying is a litmus test of a good health system and a responsible society.  Health systems have to change and embrace the need to develop innovative approaches and technologies for end-of-life care. All resources in society have a role to play – families, communities, health and care providers and technology.”

IGHI’s Centre for Health Policy also launched their new report The Global Diffusion of Healthcare Innovation at WISH.

Professor the Lord Darzi of Denham, Director of IGHI and Executive Chair of WISH said “We want to inspire people to take up the best ideas and implement them in countries all over the world, closing the gap between what we know and what we do.  And by bringing together people with the power to make a real difference, our ambition is to help improve the health of people everywhere.”

 

Student Challenges 2013

IGHI_Students_122The annual Student Challenges Competition offers Imperial medical students the opportunity to showcase their research and to win £5000 prize money to fund their chosen project, which can be on any aspect of global health innovation.

Each year, IGHI hosts a Dragon’s Den Style event to find the winner.

Gabrielle Prager, a fifth year medical student at Imperial scooped the £5,000 prize money for her work on improving the diagnosis of schistosomiasis, a neglected tropical disease.

Gabrielle and the other three finalists pitched their ideas to three high-level judges – IGHI’s Executive Chair and former CEO of Marie Curie Cancer Care, Sir Thomas Hughes-Hallett; former Chief Executive of NHS London Dame Ruth Carnall and Chair of the Trustee Board of Imperial’s Student Union, Professor Dame Julia Higgins.

Other entries covered a range of topics, including an online resource to tackle non-communicable disease, a workshop for health workers in West Africa to examine palliative care in the Gambia and a high-level symposium for world-leading experts to discuss practical ways to combat climate change.

Read Gabrielle’s blog post about her journey through the competition here

Information on how to enter Student Challenges 2014 can be found here

 

Launch of the Helix Centre for Design in Healthcare

IGHI_HouseOfLords_140The Helix Centre, a collaboration between Imperial’s IGHI and the Royal College of Art was launched during a reception at the House of Lords.

The vision of the Helix Centre for Design in Healthcare is to transform healthcare using design, making the UK a global business hub for low cost and high impact innovation.

Embedded in a clinical environment in St Mary’s Hospital, Imperial College NHS trust,  the new HELIX Centre will focus on frugal innovation or high impact, low cost design.  Encouraging a culture of innovation in the NHS, HELIX will run an extensive programme of training, workshops and seminars in innovation and entrepreneurship for healthcare staff.

Professor the Lord Darzi, co- director of HELIX and Director of IGHI said: “Innovation in healthcare can come at a high price. In the developed world it is often characterised by costly and high tech initiatives, where ideas can take a decade to deliver from concept into a clinician’s hands. HELIX will use design to solve everyday problems in healthcare, focusing on frugal solutions which can be adopted more quickly by health systems.”

 

Jo Seed
Communications and Events Officer
Institute of Global Health Innovation

Cafe Communique

Passionate about global health? Are you interested in writing?

Café Communique  is a recently founded global health magazine with the aim of bringing together science, epidemiology, humanities, policy and economics to a dynamic online platform. We are endorsed by Professor Helen Ward of Imperial College London’s School of Public Health and Professor Azeem Majeed of the WHO Collaborating Centre.

We want to get more people talking about global health; be it doctor, student or member of the public, in the hopes of delivering a greater understanding and appreciation. Our aim is to strip down the ‘white coat’ and reintroduce the definition of global health as a more entertaining, engaging issue within our medium. More importantly we strongly believe in establishing a magazine with good quality journalism that focuses on key global health issues with contributions from authorities in the subject as well as personal stories to highlight the human-interest aspect of medicine and provoke discussion.

We are currently looking to recruit a team of in-house writers to write about a variety of topics within the realm of global health. If you are interested in joining our team, please send a short cover letter no longer than 200 words to cafecommunique@gmail.com on your interests in global health, any previous writing experience (but not essential) and what you could bring to the team by 1st February. Thank you, we look forward to hearing from you!

The Café Communique Team

Visit us at http://cafecommunique.org/

ISSF Global Health Clinical Training Fellowships & Imperial Confidence in Concept scheme

ISSF Global Health Clinical Training Fellowships

We are seeking to support outstanding early-career clinical professionals wishing to undertake research, at least in part overseas, to improve the health of people and reduce health inequalities in developed and developing countries. Cross-disciplinary applications are encouraged.

These training fellowships are intended to provide opportunities for the most promising clinical academics, at the very beginning of their careers, to develop bids for independent fellowship funding. The primary aim of the fellowships is to remove obstacles to achieving peer-reviewed external grant or fellowship funding, through supporting feasibility or exploratory studies, facilitating networks and providing mentoring support from a senior Imperial academics. We anticipate that each fellow will be supported by two mentors, one based at an Imperial Campus, and one based overseas. All fellowships must commence by the 1st September, 2014.

How to apply?

If you have an Imperial and overseas sponsor, please contact ISSF@imperial.ac.uk for an application form and further information.

Should you be an interested applicant with a UK-based Imperial sponsor looking for an overseas sponsor, please provide a max 500 word summary of your interests, brief summary of project and research experience to ISSF@imperial.ac.uk. We cannot guarantee that all interested applicants with a UK-based sponsor will be matched with an overseas sponsor. Full applications would need to be submitted by 10th March 2014 to ISSF@imperial.ac.uk. Interviews for shortlisted candidates are expected to take place the week commencing 28th April 2014.

Imperial Confidence in Concept scheme

The second call for our Imperial Confidence in Concept (ICiC) scheme will be advertised next week. This initiative helps fast track promising research ideas towards a marketable product and/or clinical testing. Building on the success of the 2013 Imperial Confidence in Concept scheme and Imperial NIHR Biomedical Research Centre (BRC)/Imperial Innovations Therapeutic Primer Fund (£250,000), the College has received a further £700,000 funding from the Medical Research Council (MRC) to continue this scheme. The ICiC scheme provides pilot funding to bridge the potential gap between discovery research and well-developed applications for MRC Developmental Pathway Funding Scheme/ Developmental Clinical Studies Funding Scheme support.

An ICiC event will be held on the afternoon of Monday 17th February which will be open to all researchers within Imperial College and will require registration. This will include internal speakers as well as external speakers from the commercial sector and collaborators from the NIHR Royal Marsden/Institute of Cancer Research BRC. Further details will be circulated to faculties and departments the week beginning 27th January.

 

Dr Kimberley Trim
Research Strategy Officer
Faculty of Medicine

14 Faculty of Medicine Master’s Scholarships available

The Faculty of Medicine is offering generous scholarships to students with outstanding academic potential who apply in 2014 for one of the 30 Master’s courses run by its Schools, Institutes and Departments.

There are 4 Dean’s Master’s Scholarships available (full fees plus £17.5K flexible stipend), 2 for Home/EU and 2 for Overseas students, and 10 Faculty Master’s Scholarships (£17.5K flexible stipend), open to both Home/EU and overseas students.  Application is via an online form and the deadline is 31 March 2014.

Please advertise these widely to attract the best students to our courses. Posters such as those below (plus more styles) are available for download.  These can be printed for display in your location and/or sent via e-mail to prospective applicants or contacts in other universities (and overseas) who would be willing to circulate the information to their life science/medicine undergraduates.

If you have any queries about the Scholarships or Master’s courses, please contact Jim Osborne

posters

 

School of Medicine reorganisation and new Head of Undergraduate School of Medicine

The School of Medicine has recently been reorganised – adopting a new structure to establish clearer leadership and strengthen links with academic departments and the NHS.

Martin LuptonMr Martin Lupton (previously one of the Deputy Directors of Education) has been appointed as Head of Undergraduate School of Medicine. Martin took some time to speak to us about his new role, what the reorganisation means for medical students and how he believes the university education experience will evolve in the coming years.

Q: Congratulations on your appointment as the Head of Undergraduate School of Medicine. Can you describe this new role, as well as your main aims and objectives?

Thank you. I think the best way to describe this new role is as a facilitator and communicator. As the Chair of the School Board, my primary responsibilities are to facilitate the new leadership team in their work to improve the quality of our educational offering and to ensure that at every level the School listens to and is responsive to its students and staff (both those in our academic departments and in NHS settings).

Q: The School of Medicine has recently been reorganised with a new structure. How will these changes provide benefits to the educational offering and student experience?

Imperial College School of Medicine is a great and very large organisation, requiring collaboration across North West London. To ensure that the School can build on its success at a time of enormous change both in the University sector and the NHS, we have developed a new structure. The new structure will allow us to concentrate on the twin challenges of strategy and delivery.

Q: Which aspects of the role are you most looking forward to, and what do you envisage your greatest challenges to be?

The aspect of the role I most look forward to is also the greatest challenge.  The changes in the NHS are going to require significant parallel changes in our curriculum.  This is undoubtedly going to be difficult to achieve, but provides us with amazing opportunities to refresh and improve the content of our course.

Q: With the rise of online learning and social media, how do you think the higher education experience will change at Imperial over the coming years?

Imperial College Medical School is in a state of permanent evolution. We have already introduced iPads to the senior clinical years and have been developing high quality learning materials to populate an information spine that runs in parallel with our curriculum map. I think that in time more of the factual content of our course will be delivered through on line learning, which will be fantastic as it will allow us to use our human resource to concentrate on the ancient and unchanging need for apprenticeship and interaction in clinical medicine. The new and the old will work with increasing synergy.

Q: What do you see as the greatest benefits and opportunities for medical students studying at Imperial?

Where to begin? The two outstanding opportunities for our students are science and medical excellence. Imperial is a world class scientific institution and our students have a unique opportunity to be exposed to medical science in its evolution, from bench to bedside. Furthermore the Academic Health Partnership gathers together a stable of some of the most famous hospitals in the world, which care for probably the most diverse population in the world, in arguably the greatest city in the world and our students study in this environment! Why would you want to go anywhere else?

PCD Hold Meeting on School Feeding at House of Commons

4 girls school feeding 2

School feeding’s role in supporting agricultural development and educational achievement is to be the central topic of an address by H.E. Ogbeni Raul Argebesola, Govenor of Osun State, Nigeria, leading experts and British parliamentarians at a special event in the UK’s House of Commons on Wednesday 22nd January.

The Governor has been invited by the All Party Parliamentary Group (APPG) on Agriculture and Food for Development and the Partnership for Child Development (PCD) Imperial College London, to speak at a meeting attended by development experts focusing on the evolution and improvement of government-led Home Grown School Feeding (HGSF) programmes in low and middle income countries which feed school children using food grown locally by smallholder farmers.

Charlotte Broyd
Website and Communications Assistant
Partnership for Child Development

New Faculty of Medicine website

After a few exceptionally busy months, we relaunched our Faculty webpages on Friday 17 January 2014.

The new website has been in development for a while to showcase the work of the Faculty within our main research themes. In order to do this, research landing pages have been developed and the old and out of date material removed.

Our research on film

A large and exciting part of the project was to produce a high quality video for each ‘research landing page’ to more easily communicate what the Faculty is doing in each main area of research. Whilst the filming was completed in late-October (thank you to all that were involved!), the editing process took a bit longer than had been anticipated – trying to cut down the footage filmed in half in order to fit into the time allocated for each video was tricky.

We produced 13 videos in total: 11 for the research themes, another to give an overview of our research and one to better communicate how, through the AHSC and NIHR Imperial BRC, the Faculty translates its research.

Other objectives for the website were to:

  • Improve the homepage:
    • making it easier to navigate to key content
    • better promote news, social media activity and other content
    • increase awareness of the Academic Health Science centre and our other strategic initiatives
  • Improve the way we are communicating research across the Faculty:
    • Creating a much improved “Our research” landing page
    • Better communication of the AHSC, NIHR Imperial BRC and other strategic partnerships and initiatives
  • Review, reduce and re-prioritise content:
    • Changing our main navigation
    • Culling old, out of date and unused content
  • Audience focussed architecture:
    • Re-purposing “teaching” into “Prospective students” giving a better overview of our courses / education and in particular our Master’s degrees
    • Better information / signposting for Staff
    • Better content for the “about us” section
  • Preparation for the College website re-design / CMS project:
    • Details below

College website re-design project

With the new College website design and content management system (CMS) on the horizon, we have taken the opportunity to review content, and where necessary, cull out of date, old and redundant pages. This will make transferring to the new design and CMS a much easier, and less time consuming, process.

By using Google Analytics data (and information on when pages were last edited), we reviewed page views etc to decide what content was clearly not being visited and where content was extremely old, removing it from the website.

There is still work to be done to further improve the website and we are looking forward to getting to grips with a new content management system and college website design in the coming months.

We’ll be in touch with website editors and owners in the coming months to discuss and plan how the wider faculty website transfer process is to happen.

If you have any comments or questions, please use the comments section below.

James and Al
Digital Communications Team, Faculty of Medicine

Department of Infectious Diseases & Immunity – January Update

Awards

Nicola Lynskey was awarded a highly prestigious Sir Henry Wellcome Postdoctoral Fellowship. The sum awarded was £250,000 over 4 years, and is likely to commence April 2014.

Publications

Paper published in PLoS Pathogens: RocA Truncation Underpins Hyper-Encapsulation, Carriage Longevity and Transmissibility of Serotype M18 Group A Streptococci.

Abstract: Group A streptococcal isolates of serotype M18 are historically associated with epidemic waves of pharyngitis and the nonsuppurative immune sequela rheumatic fever. The serotype is defined by a unique, highly encapsulated phenotype, yet the molecular basis for this unusual colony morphology is unknown. Here we identify a truncation in the regulatory protein RocA, unique to and conserved within our serotype M18 GAS collection, and demonstrate that it underlies the characteristic M18 capsule phenotype. Reciprocal allelic exchange mutagenesis of rocA between M18 GAS and M89 GAS demonstrated that truncation of RocA was both necessary and sufficient for hyper-encapsulation via up-regulation of both precursors required for hyaluronic acid synthesis. Although RocA was shown to positively enhance covR transcription, quantitative proteomics revealed RocA to be a metabolic regulator with activity beyond the CovR/S regulon. M18 GAS demonstrated a uniquely protuberant chain formation following culture on agar that was dependent on excess capsule and the RocA mutation. Correction of the M18 rocA mutation reduced GAS survival in human blood, and in vivo naso-pharyngeal carriage longevity in a murine model, with an associated drop in bacterial airborne transmission during infection. In summary, a naturally occurring truncation in a regulator explains the encapsulation phenotype, carriage longevity and transmissibility of M18 GAS, highlighting the close interrelation of metabolism, capsule and virulence.

Amy Cock
PA to Professor Jon S. Friedland
Dept of Infectious Diseases & Immunity

Live Below the Line – Get Involved

Live below the line

Live Below the Line is a fundraising and campaigning event which challenges people to live below the poverty line for 5 days – the challenge is tough but gives you a unique glimpse into the lives of 1.4 billion people who live below the poverty line every day.

The Hunger Project (one of the main charity partners) is building a team of Live Below ambassadors/bloggers/participants to spread the word. If you are interested, get in touch with Mark.

You can take on the challenge at any time during the campaign window which…
Starts – Monday, March 03, 2014.
Ends – Sunday, June 29, 2014.

Most participants will take the challenge in the MAIN campaign week Monday 28 April to Friday 02 May.

Join the challenge – No signup or registration fees. £5 | 5 Days for all food and drink. Pre-register here http://eepurl.com/JTHa5

Registration opens in the spring. If you’re interested in taking part or building a team join this event page, invite your friends. If you’re interested in keeping in touch email mark.speirs@thp.org QUOTE: LBL14

http://www.thehungerproject.co.uk/getinvolved/live-below-the-line/

Mark Speirs
Marketing/Comms/Fundraising Manager
The Hunger Project UK

8th UK and Ireland Occupational & Environmental Epidemiology Meeting

Thursday 3 April 2014 – National Heart and Lung Institute (Imperial College), London SW3

Course description

Suitable for those with research interests in occupational and environmental epidemiology.  Early career researchers are particularly welcome.  Held each year from 2005, the aim is to enable cross-fertilization of research interests between those with an interest in occupational and environmental epidemiology.  Various topics are examined in a fairly informal environment, and encourage discussion and collaborative networking.

Registration details

Registration fee: £50; rising to £75 after ‘early bird’ closes on Friday 21 February (midnight).

Registration link Online Registration Form.  This form and the provisional programme, registration/abstract submission details, including the submission form, are accessed via our website: http://lungsatwork.org.uk/courses.php . Please complete and save the abstract submission form to your PC, and then e-mail it to Magda Wheatley at m.wheatley@imperial.ac.uk.

Keynote speakers

  • Mr Robie Kamanyire, Public Health England, will speak on the subject of shale gas extraction (also known as ‘fracking’).
  • Dr Ruth Travis, University of Oxford, Cancer Epidemiology Unit, will speak on the subject of shift work.
  • Dr Martie van Tongeren, Institute of Occupational Medicine, Edinburgh, will speak nanotechnology.

We are very grateful for the support of Public Health England and the MRC-PHE Centre for Environment and Health, and for the Colt Foundation’s endorsement of this meeting.

Magda Wheatley
Departmental Administrator
Department of Occupational and Environmental Medicine – National Heart & Lung Institute

 

Academic Unit of Child & Adolescent Psychiatry – January Update

Awards

European Psychiatric Association

Dr Mari Dominguez (Honorary Lecturer) was awarded the EPA Research Prize in the ‘Child and Adolescent Psychiatry’ category for the best scientific paper published in 2013, and will be attending the 22nd European Congress of Psychiatry in Munich in March.

Publications

A paper published by Dr Mari Dominguez (Dominguez, M-d-G., Fisher, HL., Major, B., Chisholm, B., et al (in press). Duration of untreated psychosis in adolescents: ethnic differences and clinical profiles. Schizophrenia Research, doi/10.1016/j.schres.2013.08.018)   garnered national press attention:

The Evening Standard (31.10.13) carried a piece on the study highlighting that the misattribution of symptoms to cannabis use rather than psychosis can lead to delays in adolescents getting the appropriate treatment.

Nicole Hickey
Academic Unit of Child & Adolescent Psychiatry

Professor Peter Barnes Awarded Honorary Doctorate

P BarnesProfessor Peter Barnes received an honorary doctorate from the University of Maastricht, Netherlands, on January 10th 2014.

As part of  Maastricht University’s celebration of  its 38th anniversary, or Dies Natalis, five ‘outstanding individuals’ – including Professor Barnes – received  honorary doctorates.  The event was marked, after two terms as vice-president of Maastricht Universit, by André Postema’s stepping down from its Executive Board, with a speech entitled ‘Maastricht University: a love story’.

The Global School Health and Nutrition Resource Relaunched

The global school health and nutrition resource schoolsandhealth.org, administered by Partnership for Child Development (PCD), was recently re-launched to further the reach of high quality School Health and Nutrition (SHN) documents, resources and news to the SHN community.

Improving the way news and information on the health, nutrition and education of school-age children around the world is disseminated remains as vital as ever. The new website allows quality assured, academically reviewed SHN resources, data and information to be distinguished from the multitude of information now available online; ensuring the SHN community has easy access to what they are looking for.” said PCD’s Executive Director, Lesley Drake.

schoolsandhealth.org was developed in 1998 in collaboration between: World Bank, World Food Programme, World Health Organization, UNICEF, PCD and other partners in response to a demand for a global online portal making SHN resources easily accessible to SHN interest groups, and in particular to policy makers and practitioners. The re-launched website continues to adhere to this demand; through its new and improved sections the website’s user friendliness, navigation and accessibility from internet searches is further ensured.

 

Selected New Website Features

 

 

Documents and Resource Centre:

The revitalised Documents and Resource Centre holds over an impressive 670 resources – twice as many relevant SHN relevant resources as previously displayed. These range in topic from: examples of good programming practice and policy, case studies, technical reviews, toolkits and guidelines, reports, surveys, advocacy tools and international declarations. Within the centre details including description, topic, title and author are outlined for each document allowing information to be easily viewed prior to download. Searches can also be categorized by SHN theme, language and year.
• Visit the Documents and Resource Centre

Updated Website Pages:

The website provides revamped pages for relevant school health topic areas including: helminth infectionsnutritionHIVwater, hygiene and sanitationacute respiratory infections and malaria. Reflecting  SHN expansion, the site now encompasses an inclusive education section.

News & Events Section:

Global and country specific school health news continues to be displayed in a new appealing format through the website’s news and events section holding almost 200 diverse SHN news articles which can be easily viewed collectively as well as in detail individually.
• Visit the News and Events Section

Visit schoolsandhealth.org to view all other features and the revitalised layout.

 

Charlotte Broyd
Website and Communications Assistant
Partnership for Child Development

REF and all that…

Well, it’s over for another 6 years, all bar the shouting. The Faculty finally submitted its REF2014 return on 22 November well ahead of the November 29th deadline, along with the rest of the College.  The hard metrics show that we have returned 435 FTEs (representing 521 academics) across three Units of assessment:

  • UoA1 – Clinical medicine
  • UoA2 – Epidemiology and Public Health
  • UoA4 – Neurosciences.

We take this opportunity to thank all our academics, our impact case contributors, our Divisional administrators and their teams and our HoDs for their unswerving commitment and sheer hard work to make this such a strong return.

UoA1 is our largest return with 334 FTEs representing 406 academics, which is over 25% of the whole College in one single unit. There were 34 impact cases presented – whittled down by the Faculty REF Impact Committee (chaired by Deborah Ashby) from the >80 impacts which we initially reviewed. These impact cases are completely new to this year’s REF so we, and all our competitors, are working without any precedents to guide us. However, we were really impressed by the high quality of the translation of our research into new therapies, clinical guidelines and health policies. Given the size and ability of our Faculty, we have high hopes of a strong result in UoA1.

In the last RAE2008 exercise, our Dept of Epidemiology, Public Health and Primary Care was joint 1st nationally in its UoA with 33 FTEs returned. In REF2014, we have returned 55 FTEs in UoA2 (61 academics), and six impact cases. We believe that the quality of our outputs is as high as previously, and with two new MRC Centres, strong impact cases and the creation of the expanded School of Public Health, we hope and expect to equal our performance in this competitive area.

We have returned 44 FTEs (54 academics) in Neuroscience, representing the College and Faculty support for the rebuilding of this critical component of our research base in Medicine, under the leadership of Prof Paul Matthews. The three Neuroscience themes have each demonstrated critical mass, high quality outputs and compelling impact cases; we are optimistic that we shall exceed our performance in this UoA over RAE2008.

This REF return is very much a team effort involving the whole Faculty, but the contributions of Lyndsey Pallant and Sarah Perkins have been massive and this is an opportunity for the Faculty to thank them wholeheartedly for their skill and dedication.

The results of REF2014 will be public in December 2014; in the meanwhile my colleagues and I brace ourselves for the actual assessment process itself in the Spring.

Professor Jonathan Weber
Vice Dean
 (Research)
Faculty of Medicine

Professor John Warner Awarded OBE at Windsor Palace

Prof J O Warner OBEProfessor John Warner, a consultant paediatrician at Imperial College Healthcare NHS Trust, was awarded his OBE at Windsor Castle on 22 November. Speaking at his Investiture, Professor Warner said he was honoured to receive the award.

“It was unexpected and unasked for. I feel very flattered and honoured that my research and the research of my team has been recognised in this way.”

Professor Warner has been involved in food allergy research over the past 25 years. His research has focused on the early life origins of asthma and related allergic and respiratory disorders. He is currently working on a programme to improve knowledge and co-ordinate the management of children with allergies in general practices, nurseries, schools and home.

Student facility upgrades

Over the summer, a number of upgrades have taken place to improve the student and staff facilities across our campuses.

Charing Cross

The Reynolds Café and Reynolds bar have been completely refurbished – a much needed modernisation to support our students and staff at this site.

Reynolds Bar

Reynolds Cafe

Reynolds Gym

The Gym facilities at this campus have also been upgraded providing better fitness facilities for our staff and students.  This also includes the Energia Strength and Conditioning Room which includes state-of-the-art facilities for students who want to maximise their athletic performance.

Hammersmith

Over at the Hammersmith campus, a complete refurbishment of the 3rd floor has taken place along with teaching labs, student common room and computer lab.

Seminar rooms in the sub-basement have also been upgraded and modernised to provide a better lecturing space.

Other upgrades:

We are continually improving the student and staff experience across the Faculty. A number of other areas have seen upgrades:

Partnership for Child Development October update

1st Francophone SHN Course Opens in Senegal

Organised by the Partnership for Child Development, Institute of Health and Development (ISED) and the University of Dakar the first Francophone School Health and Nutrition (SHN) was opened in Senegal on Monday. The course will host government representatives from 13 African Francophone countries, who for 10 days will focus on supporting effective SHN intervention delivery.

Opening the ceremony, Professor Anta Tal Dia, Director of ISED addressed participants, “The consensus is unanimous, it is essential to ensure good school health and nutrition if we want to see high educational achievement.”

Read more about the Course.

 

School meals can do more than just feed children

Each year on 16 October World Food Day aims to increase understanding of problems and solutions in the drive to end hunger, malnutrition and poverty. Over the years the day has taken on various themes which have focused on investing in agriculture and recently focus has been drawn on health and education too.

One solution which countries have put in place to combat hunger and poverty is to provide free school meals to their schoolchildren. Through school feeding programmes countries see results – results in terms of happier, healthier and better educated kids. The evidence base shows that school feeding increases pupil enrolment, improves retention and that educational outcomes improve as children are able to concentrate better and ultimately enter adult life better equipped.

Increasingly countries are beginning to realise that school feeding can do more than just benefit school children. By procuring their food locally school feeding programmes can support marginalised smallholder farmers by providing them with a constant stable market to sell to; increasing profits for smallholder farmers whilst at the same time providing fresh and nutritious local food to school meals.

Read more in the article School meals can do more than just feed children

Charlotte Broyd
Website and Communications Assistant
Partnership for Child Development