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Bone & Joint Health welcomes first physiotherapist awarded UKRI Future Leaders Fellowship

The Barts Bone & Joint Health group are delighted to announce that Katie Sheehan, our very first Professor of Rehabilitation, will be joining Queen Mary on Wednesday 1 November.

Katie Sheehan staff photo

Professor Katie Sheehan

Katie is the first physiotherapist to be awarded a prestigious UKRI Future Leaders Fellowship. As such, this significant post will have a wide impact in supporting the clinical academic careers of allied health professionals. Katie discusses her ambitions for the new role:

I am incredibly excited to join a faculty driven by the challenge of ensuring equitable health care both locally and globally. I am delighted to support the vision of Bone & Joint Health by bringing rehabilitation expertise to the table of leaders in prevention, diagnosis and treatment of musculoskeletal conditions. The growth and achievements of Bone & Joint Health over the last few years have been exceptional and I want to be a part of it! Together we can realise the vision of global excellence in this space. To me, this is possible given the environment of outstanding complementary expertise across Queen Mary, close ties with excellence in allied health delivery at Barts Health, and the opportunity to support emerging allied health clinical academics at Barts Health. We have an incredible opportunity with our colleagues at Barts Health to develop the next generation of clinical academics in this field, continuing to build expertise in fragility fracture management at Whipps Cross.

I firmly believe health research should be in pursuit of what matters to patients while considering what is feasible within a public health service. This requires active engagement of patients, carers, health professionals, and those who make decisions around service funding. The success of my work to date is largely due to acknowledgment of the need for this engagement from the point of developing research questions to translating findings to practice. Establishing this network locally is a key priority for me and will be key in ensuring my programme of rehabilitation research is directly relevant to the needs of those in east London, and will be prioritised by those who can enable translation of findings to practice. 

I currently support the Global Fragility Fracture Network in the capacity of Scientific Chair-elect and will seek to use this platform as a launch for translating evidence generated at Bone & Joint Health to the global community.

My ambition is to create a sustainable and world-leading rehabilitation research group driving change in access to- and delivery of evidence-based rehabilitation for the benefit of patients with fragility fracture. This will be achieved through productive collaboration across disciplines and supporting the capacity growth of emerging talent in rehabilitation research. Through our close links with Whipps Cross, Queen Mary and Bone & Joint Health is the ideal host to realise my ambition, given their vision to "open the door of opportunities", access to diverse local populations, and links with Whipps Cross specialist fragility fracture services.

Bone & Joint Health

Bone & Joint Health is the largest and busiest orthopaedic department in the country. Our clinical care is based across three hospitals: The Royal London, Whipps Cross University Hospital and the Barts Health Orthopaedic Centre in Newham. Our purpose is simple: to improve the health and wellbeing of people with bone and joint disorders and injuries. We focus on conditions that affect the musculoskeletal system. This includes bones, joints, ligaments, muscles, nerves, and tendons.



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