Imperial College London

Imperial blood expert recognised for a lifetime of achievement

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Professor Barbara Bain (left) receives the award from Dr Tim Littlewood, president of the British Society for Haematology

Professor Barbara Bain (left) receives the award from Dr Tim Littlewood, president of the BSH

An esteemed haematologist at Imperial College London has been recognised for a career of 'exceptional commitment and leadership' in the field.

Professor Barbara Bain from the Department of Medicine, who is course director for haematology – the branch of medicine concerned with studying and treating the blood – was presented with a lifetime achievement award by the British Society for Haematology (BSH) at its annual meeting today.

Speaking about its decision, president of the BSH, Dr Tim Littlewood, said the accolade was reserved for extraordinary people who have contributed significantly over a sustained period and was given in recognition of Professor Bain’s contributions to the field throughout her career.

“Professor Bain has made a clinical, academic and teaching commitment not only to British haematology but also internationally over several decades,” said Dr Littlewood. “She is famous for her morphology teaching and her encyclopaedic knowledge.”

Professor Bain said she originally took an interest in haematology due to the combination of clinical and laboratory work that the specialty offered.

She said she counted her contributions to teaching and training medical students and future haematologists amongst her greatest achievements.

‘Encyclopaedic knowledge’

She is most proud of maintaining and developing the courses on Imperial’s St Mary’s campus over 30 years, together with a loyal team of collaborators. The courses have expanded to include genetic disorders affecting haemoglobin, as well as the traditional analysis of blood and bone marrow samples.

Commenting on what advice she would offer students just starting out and considering the specialty, Professor Bain said: “Keep an open mind for a few years and get a broad and deep knowledge of all aspects of haematology before subspecialisation.

Professor Bain has made a clinical, academic and teaching commitment not only to British haematology but also internationally over several decades

– Dr Tim Littlewood

President of the BSH

“Don’t forget that laboratory haematology is the basis of what we do – don’t leave it to pathologists.”

Alongside developing courses and training clinicians, Professor Bain has helped to develop bloodmed.com, an educational tool that is used an online training platform and educational tool used by almost all UK trainees and now incorporated into the BSH website.

Professor Bain has been a member of the BSH for over eighteen years. The society said that not only has her contribution to haematology been significant but her ongoing dedication to the BSH is tremendously appreciated.

She has sat on multiple committees and regularly organised and presented at events. In addition, she has acted as the editor of case studies and image submissions to the BSH website. 

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This article is based on materials from the British Society for Haematology.

See the press release of this article

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Ryan O'Hare

Ryan O'Hare
Communications and Public Affairs

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