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Report of the General Board on the establishment of a Professorship of Cardiothoracic Surgery

The GENERAL BOARD beg leave to report to the University as follows:

1. Coronary heart disease remains a leading cause of mortality and morbidity in the UK and in their White Paper 'Saving Lives: our Healthier Nation', the Government set out its commitment to reducing the death rate from heart disease and related illnesses such as stroke. This has now been afforced by the launch of the Government's ten-year strategic plan (the National Service Framework on Coronary Heart Disease). The University has already recognized the importance of research in this area and approved the establishment in 1994 of a Professorship of Cardiovascular Medicine, supported on funds provided by the British Heart Foundation. A Report on the establishment of a second Professorship of Cardiovascular Medicine, also funded by the British Heart Foundation, has also recently been published. Over the last few years the Faculty Board of Clinical Medicine have fostered a collaborative approach to developments in this field through the establishment of the Cambridge Centre for Cardiovascular and Respiratory Research. This Centre has been very successful in providing a forum for the strategic development of research and facilitating interaction between representatives from the Clinical School, a number of University Departments in the biological sciences, and the Papworth and Addenbrooke's NHS Trusts.

2. In view of the demonstrable importance that the Government continues to attach to supporting research developments in this field, the existing availability of a strong research base within the University, and the significant opportunities that will arise as a result of the expansion in research envisaged in the Addenbrooke's '2020 Vision' document, the Faculty Board of Clinical Medicine have concluded that it would now be opportune to support and foster academic developments in the field of cardiovascular surgery. This proposal has received strong support from the Eastern Regional Office of the NHS Executive, the Cambridgeshire, Norfolk, Suffolk, and Bedfordshire Health Authorities, and all the local Primary Care Groups/Trusts within the 2.4 million catchment area served by the Papworth NHS Trust.

3. The Faculty Board have accordingly advised the General Board that a Professorship should be established in the University to provide leadership for an initiative in the field of cardiothoracic surgery. The holder of the Professorship would be expected to provide leadership in a programme of research in this field and to participate in the teaching of the subject at both undergraduate and postgraduate levels. Funds have been made available by the Papworth NHS Trust to meet the full cost of the Professorship, at Consultant level, for a single tenure, and also to cover essential secretarial and technical support and non-pay expenditure associated with the Professorship. In the event of any shortfall in this NHS funding, the Faculty Board have agreed to meet the full cost of the office from within their existing resources. The Addenbrooke's and Papworth NHS Trusts have agreed to award an honorary Consultant contract to the Professor and to provide full access to appropriate clinical facilities. The Faculty Board have assured the General Board that suitable accommodation is available for the Professor.

4. The General Board have accepted the case made by the Faculty Board; they are assured that the Professorship will attract a strong field of well-qualified candidates; they have agreed to concur in the view of the Faculty Board that an election to the Professorship should be made by an ad hoc Board of Electors, and that candidature should be open without limitation or preference to all persons whose work falls within the general field of the title of the office.

5. The General Board recommend:

That a Professorship of Cardiothoracic Surgery be established from 1 April 2001, placed in Schedule B of the Statutes, and assigned to the Department of Surgery.

1 November 2000

ALEC N. BROERS, Vice-Chancellor

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Cambridge University Reporter, 22 November 2000
Copyright © 2000 The Chancellor, Masters and Scholars of the University of Cambridge.