Clinical Fellow awarded Royal College of Physicians and Clinical Research Network award

A Greater Manchester doctor has earned a prestigious accolade which recognises outstanding contributions of NHS consultants and trainees who are active in research.

Dr John McDermott has been named as one of four trainee winners of the joint National Institute for Health Research Clinical Research Network (NIHR CRN) and Royal College of Physicians (RCP) award. 

Dr McDermott is an NIHR Academic Clinical Fellow in Genomic Medicine/Core Medical Trainee. He is based at Saint Mary’s Hospital, part of Manchester University NHS Foundation Trust.

Applicants were required to outline their contribution to the leadership of several NIHRCRN Portfolio studies, with a particular focus on:

  • How they demonstrate clinical leadership enabling their organisation to increase its participation in clinical studies.
  • How they engaged with patients to inform them of new opportunities to participate in clinical research.
  • Their contribution to successful delivery of clinical research studies, with a particular emphasis on industry (commercial contract) studies.

Dr McDermott’s research interest involves the application of genetic information in the acute setting to improve patient safety and patient outcomes.

Dr John McDermott

Dr John McDermott

He said: “I was thrilled to find out I had been awarded the joint RCP/NIHR CRN prize this year. The Manchester Centre for Genomic Medicine is a fantastic place to work and I’m grateful to all the clinicians and academics who have supported me.

The department has a strong track record with rare disease and cancer research but recent technological advancements mean that we are now better placed than ever to utilise genomics to improve healthcare for everyone on a day-to-day basis.

“This might mean rapid genetic testing to avoid dangerous side-effects, like the test we are developing to avoid hearing loss in neonates, tailored drug prescribing based on your genetic makeup, or disease risk prediction based on your ‘polygenic risk score’.

“This is an exhilarating time to be working in the field of human genomics and I am excited to continue collaborating with our clinical and research colleagues across Manchester and the UK to advance personalised healthcare. “

As part of the application process, applicants had to set out how they would use the prize money to increase their contribution to NIHR CRN Portfolio studies in the future.

Dr McDermott said: “I hope to enrol on a course at the Cathie March Institute for Social Research to better develop my understanding of the statistical programming language ‘R’. This will better help me handle and interpret the large datasets which are crucial to personalised medicine research.”

On the award winners, Royal College of Physicians academic vice president, Professor Margaret Johnson said: “Once again, winners who show the very high standard of research being undertaken by physicians in the NHS. Many congratulations to you all.”

Professor Nick Lemoine, Medical Director of the NIHR CRN, said: “After a record year of recruitment of patients to NIHR portfolio studies, it is terrific to be able to celebrate the commitment and energy of the winners of the 2018 RCP/CRN awards. Each of these consultants and trainees is making a huge contribution to clinical research in their region and it is great to see the next generation of researchers coming through.”

Dr McDermott will be invited to attend the Royal College of Physicians new members ceremony on 3 October 2018.

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