Richard Lilford started his medical career in Obstetrics and Gynaecology, making many new discoveries such as invention of the trans-abdominal route for chorion biopsy, discovering a familial basis for male sub-fertility and initiating a MRC trial to show that early delivery of the growth retarded baby leads to worse outcomes than a policy of active monitoring. He was Professor of Obstetrics and Gynaecology in Leeds for 11 years. Twice elected to the Council of the Royal College of Obstetrics and Gynaecology he also chaired its Audit Committee. In this role he broke new ground by promulgating national standards for clinical practice, communication with patients and organisation of care. He served on the executive committee of Leeds Medical School and was an Executive Director of the United Leeds Teaching Hospitals Trust.
Richard then moved to the Department of Health (DH) as Regional Director of R&D and Clinical Trials Advisor, and he established the Research and Development Methodology Research Programme. He co-ordinated the regional application to provide more medical student placements that resulted in the formation of two new medical schools at the Universities of Keele and Warwick.
Richard returned to the university sector in 2001 serving as Professor of Clinical Epidemiology at the University of Birmingham. He directed the Patient Safety Research Programme, National Programme for Information Technology, and Research Methods commissioning programme on behalf of DH. He was appointed Head of the School of Health and Population Sciences, incorporating Public and Occupational Health, Primary Care and Nursing and Physiotherapy, and later became Vice-Dean for Applied Research in the College of Medicine and Dentistry. He has been Chief Investigator for NIHR, HTA, MRC, EPSRC and Health Foundation grants and co-investigator on numerous other NIHR grants. He directs the NIHR Collaboration for Leadership in Applied Health Research and Care (CLAHRC) for the West Midlands and its forerunner organisation, each based on £10 million NIHR funds and over twice this amount in matched funds.
Richard is a NIHR Senior Investigator and was awarded the Spinoza Chair from the University of Amsterdam, and an honorary DSc from the University of Keele. He has been a visiting Professor at many overseas universities, served on a Research Assessment Evaluation panel, the MRC Health Service and Population Research Board and the NICE appraisal committee among many others and has been advisor to the Agency for Health Research and Care in Washington, the Canadian Safety Foundation and numerous WHO committees.
Richard has pursued a varied career across university, NHS and government sectors.
Research methodology has been a unifying theme throughout his evolving career. He has written extensively on Bayesian statistics, research ethics and health economics at the development stage of new treatments and services. Under Richard’s leadership, CLAHRC WM has become the world’s premier group for the methodology of the increasingly popular step wedge cluster design, summarised in a forthcoming BMJ paper.
Richard’s wide experience and methodological expertise were put to good use in co-ordinating the University Hospitals Birmingham NHS Foundation Trust’s successful £10 million bid to establish the NIHR Surgical Reconstruction and Microbiology Research Centre, along with follow-on grants from the Healing Foundation, NIHR Health Technology Co-operative, and the MRC. A report he co-ordinated for the MRC strategy committee formed the basis for an initiative to promote laboratory research into trauma care and for a Lancet paper.
Richard now combines his directorship of the CLAHRC WM with a new job as Professor of Public Health at the University of Warwick, with a remit to create a ‘CLAHRC for Africa’. He continues his interest in trauma with a theme of work on use of in-vehicle technology to reduce the scourge of road traffic accidents in emerging economies.
Professor Richard J Lilford DSc PhD FRCOG FRCP FFPH
Professor of Public Health
Director of W-CAHRD
Director of NIHR CLAHRC WM
Room A155, 1st Floor
Warwick Medical School
University of Warwick
Office: +44 (0)24765 75884
Mobile: +44 (0)7884 733065
Home: +44 (0) 121 4405618
Email: r dot j dot lilford at warwick dot ac dot uk