Swansea University Professor appointed as Chair of Respiratory Medicine

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Professor Keir Lewis has been appointed jointly by Hywel Dda University Health Board (UHB) and Swansea University as the Health Board's first clinical chair and currently the only practising clinical chair in Respiratory Medicine in Wales.

Professor Lewis has been working as a Consultant in Respiratory and General Medicine at Hywel Dda UHB for 12 years, and has also held academic roles in Swansea University throughout this time.

He has now been appointed to the formal joint health and academic role, which aims to improve care for patients with respiratory disease here in Hywel Dda and beyond.

Professor Keith Lloyd, Head of Swansea University’s Medical School, Professor KePictured left: Professor Keith Lloyd, Head of Swansea University’s Medical School, Professor Keir Lewis, and Hywel Dda University Health Board Chair, Bernardine Rees. 

Professor Lewis said: “I hope to build on the excellent work achieved during the last five years to improve the health and well-being of people within our area by making stronger links with academia.

“By working more closely with all our local universities, especially Swansea University Medical School, and various research and commercial institutions through-out the world, we are already opening up lots of opportunities in research and training.

“Our patients are getting more access to state-of-the-art treatments, and cutting-edge research and we have much more potential to release our staff enthusiasm and forge new partnerships through projects such as ARCH (A Regional Collaboration for Health), the Mid Wales Collaboration and other work pursued as part of the University Partnership Board.”

‌‌Professor Lewis is well-established medical author having written dozens of original papers, as well as co-authoring and editing books and book chapters on respiratory health covering areas of smoking cessation and clinical diagnosis.

He has presented at medical conferences across the world and been a leading force in attracting significant funding and research to the Hywel Dda and Swansea areas.

The post will be hosted Swansea University’s Medical School, and Professor Lewis will continue with his clinical role, based primarily at Prince Philip Hospital, Llanelli.

Dean and Head of Swansea University’s Medical School Professor Keith Lloyd said: “We are delighted with this appointment and we are sure that Professor Lewis is the right person to shape delivery of care, using academia, to the benefit of patient outcomes in the future.”

Hywel Dda UHB Chief Executive Steve Moore added: “This is a landmark appointment for our health board and one which will not only improve our credentials for those seeking respiratory medical employment but other medical appointments as well.

“Far from being removed from the rest of the UK, we are fortunate to have excellent universities at our doorstep here in the Hywel Dda area and clinicians are encouraged to continue their professional development whilst working here.”

Professor Lewis will work as part of the respiratory team of consultants that are all already impacting on national and international policy and researching the prevention, diagnosis and treatment of respiratory illness, providing high quality healthcare to patients across the Hywel Dda area. This appointment helps them to improve training opportunities; carry out teaching; and undertake research with evidence of specific outcomes.

Swansea University is 5-star rated for teaching excellence and within the UK Top 30 as indicated by the Research Excellence Framework, for medicine, science, engineering and arts and humanities. Swansea University Medical School is acknowledged as one of the fastest growing medical schools in the UK.