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Date: 7 June 2023
Meet the team
Dr Tarek Hiwot
Dr Hiwot is the Clinical Lead for the Inherited Metabolic Disorders (IMD) Service at University Hospitals Birmingham.
Dr Charlotte Dawson
Dr Dawson joined the team in 2012 and sees patients with inherited metabolic conditions as well as Lysosomal Storage disorders.
Sarah Steeds and Helen Gallagher, clinical nurse specialists
Sarah Steeds joined the Inherited Metabolic Diseases team at the beginning of 2017 as a clinical nurse specialist. She began working at the QE in 2015 as a Clinical Nurse Specialist in the Centre for Rare Diseases and has a background in palliative care, oncology and research.
Helen Gallagher started working as a clinical nurse specialist in IMD in February 2017. She has previously worked as a CNS in both oncology and palliative care, completing her masters in palliative care in 2016.
Sarah and Helen support patients and carers in outpatient clinics, completing home visits and being available over the phone for support, advice and signposting. The metabolic team runs regular one-stop clinics for several patient groups, including Alstrom syndrome, Fabry disease and Pompe disease, during which the nurses are available to offer individual support as required.
Sarah and Helen are also involved in liaising with local and national services to improve support, resources and advocate for patients’ needs with the aim of improving their quality of life. They attend conferences to maintain specialist knowledge and awareness of research in the field of IMD.
Sarah Steeds (mobile): 07766 421855
Tel: 0121 371 6986
Helen Gallagher (mobile): 07766 441159
Tel: 0121 371 6985
Vishy Veeranna, Research Charge Nurse
Vishy joined the Inherited Metabolic Disorders team in 2014 and has worked in research for most of his nursing career since gaining qualification in 1993.
As lead Research Charge Nurse for the service, he is responsible for recruitment, coordinating, delivering clinical interventions and follow up care of patients with rare diseases in clinical trial studies. He also provides information, advice and support to patients/carers and provide research support to other healthcare professionals for studies being undertaken across sites to facilitate multidisciplinary working across all healthcare sectors.
Vishy's goal is to establish a specialist research service for patients with complex rare diseases by working in close collaboration with clinicians, sponsors and specific patients groups to promote clinical research within the Trust and facilitate recruitment of patients in clinical trials.
Tel: 0121 371 6986
Mob: 07766 505 129
Antonio Ochoa-Ferraro, Pharmacist
I am a clinical hospital pharmacist specialising in rare diseases. I provide assistance and advice to the clinical team and to patients and their carers on various medication related queries including medicines optimisation, taking into consideration drug interactions and adverse effects, drug adherence, formulation advice, availability and access of medications both within the hospital and in the community. I liaise with community GP’s and local pharmacies to ensure any changes in medication have been communicated.
Tel: 0121 371 6798
Kelly Watkins, IMD Service Coordinator
Kelly joined the Inherited Metabolic Disorders Team in May 2018 and has a background in Child and Adolescent Psychiatry and Respiratory.
If you have an emergency and require our out of hours service, please contact our switchboard on 0121 371 2000 and ask to be put through to the Inherited Metabolic Disorders Consultant on-call.
Tel: 0121 371 6984
Mobile: 07385 349 770
Email: Kelly.Watkins@uhb.nhs.uk or Kelly.Watkins@nhs.net
Lindsey Fletcher-Jennings, Medical Secretary/PA
Lindsey joined the Inherited Metabolic Disorders Team in August 2021 as Medical Secretary/PA to the team and has a background in Respiratory and Endocrinology.
If you wish to contact the Consultants, please do so via Lindsey. If you have an emergency and require our out of hours service please contact our switchboard on 0121 371 2000 and ask to be put through to the Inherited Metabolic Disorders Consultant on-call.
Tel: 0121 371 6987
Mobile: 07385 349 769
Email: Lindsey.Fletcher-Jennings@uhb.nhs.uk or email@example.com
Nicola Condon, Physiotherapist
Nicola joined the Inherited Metabolic Disorders team in 2010. She is an experienced Physiotherapist having worked previously in adult neurological and neuromuscular rehabilitation and has developed strong links with local and national physiotherapy and rehabilitation services.
Nicola is available during clinics and can provide comprehensive physical assessments which may involve looking at muscle strength, functional ability i.e. what you are able to do for yourself and monitoring of exercise tolerance. She will be able to advise on appropriate exercise, postural management, identifying any supportive equipment needs and can link with local therapy and wheelchair services. She is also involved with research and attends patient events and conferences.
The role of physiotherapy is to help you better manage any physical limitations of your metabolic disease which may impact on your daily life through involvement with you and your local team.
Shaun Bolton, Research Coordinator and Quality Assurance Officer
Shaun is the Research Coordinator and Quality Assurance officer for the IMD service. Within these roles, Shaun supports the set up and delivery of clinical research, ranging from clinical trials to registry studies, and manages the clinical audits of the IMD service. This helps the IMD department ensure it is providing opportunities for patients to access quality research and is refining and improving its clinical service.
Mary Smith, Senior Health Care Assistant
Mary has worked with the IMD team as a Senior Health Care Assistant since 2012. Her role is to support patients and assist in clinics.
- Specialist dietitians: Louise Robertson, Sarah Howe and Clare Dale
- Dietetic assistant: Sarah Kearney
Our dietetic team are experienced dietitians who have worked in a variety of specialities before IMD. Louise helped set up the IMD adult service at UHB back in 2008 and is also the dietitian for the Galactosamia Support Group in the UK. Sarah Howe joined the team in 2010 and has an interest in Alstrom and glycogen storage disorders. Clare is an experienced renal dietitian who transfered her skills to work in IMD in 2017. Clare takes the lead in our transition service. In 2018 Sarah Kearney joined our team part time as a dietetic assistant and is a great help to us.
Our dietetic team are involved in the care of adult IMDs, including those going through transition, LSD and Alstrom. The team is available during clinics, to give specialist advice to those patients who require dietary modification as part of their treatment. They also get involved in patient events, research, and UK IMD groups, and regularly give talks at national and international events.
Tel: 0121 371 6989
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