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Steering group

The steering group consists of academic rheumatologists, all still committed to clinical services and patient-oriented research (so not too ivory-tower-ish), along with people representing patients with different forms of SpA either through their involvement with a patient organization or because they have the condition (or both). 


Professor Neil McHugh (Alt email) (Chair)
Consultant Rheumatologist, Royal National Hospital for Rheumatic Diseases
PA: Liz Williams

Professor Philip Helliwell (Vice-Chair)
Senior Lecturer in Rheumatology, University of Leeds 

Dr Andrew Keat
Consultant Rheumatologist, Northwick Park, London

Dr Lesley Kay  
Honorary Clinical Senior Lecturer in Rheumatology, Newcastle University
PA Ann Marie Smith

Dr Stefan Siebert 
Senior Lecturer in Rheumatology, Swansea University

Professor Gary Macfarlane  
Professor of Epidemiology, University of Aberdeen
PA Georgia Mannion

Ms Jane Martindale 
Clinical Specialist Physiotherapist, Wrightington Hospital

Dr Pauline Ho 
Consultant Rheumatologist, The Kellgren Centre for Rheumatology

Dr Raj Sengupta (alt email)
Consultant Rheumatologist, Royal National Hospital for Rheumatic Diseases NHS Foundation Trust
PA Liz Williams

Dr Jon Packham
Clinical Senior Lecturer/Consultant Rheumatologist, Haywood Hospital, Stoke-on-Trent

Professor Paul Bowness
Professor of Experimental Rheumatology, University of Oxford


Dr William Tillett
Locum Consultant Rheumatologist, Royal National Hospital for Rheumatic Diseases NHS FT, Bath
Trainee Representative


Dr Louise Hamilton
SpR Rheumatology, Norfolk & Norwich University Hospital.
Trainee Representative


Dr Iona Thorne
SpR Rheumatology, Northwick Park Hospital.  
Trainee Representative – deputising for Louise Hamilton if necessary.

Mrs Debbie Cook 
Director of NASS

Mr David Chandler 
Chief Executive, Psoriasis and Psoriatic Arthritis Alliance – PAPAA

Ms Margaret Hughes 
NACC patient representative

The importance of the patient perspective in clinical research is constantly emphasised at a national level, and we have been fortunate to attract the active participation of these steering group members. Their input to the research proposals and priorities which we have been considering has already been useful and distinctive.

As time goes on, we will need to co-opt additional members to the CSG, and its membership will be expected to evolve over time rather than being determined for a fixed time period. In order to allow effective working, it will always remain a relatively small steering group, rather than a representative body.

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