Justin is a consultant clinical-academic and service lead, specialising in dysphagia in benign and malignant head and neck disorders. He works at 2 internationally renowned centres of excellence. He has been employed at the Royal Marsden NHS Foundation Trust (RMH) since 2008 and is currently a Consultant and Joint Head of the Department of Speech, Voice and Swallowing. He was appointed as the Clinical Service Lead at the National Centre for Airway Reconstruction/ Laryngology Service at Imperial College Healthcare NHS Trust (ICHT) in 2016. He has held an honorary academic appointment in the Department of Surgery and Cancer at Imperial College London since 2016. He is also an Honorary Consultant Speech and Language Therapist at the Royal Brompton and Harefield Hospitals providing clinical support and professional leadership to a team of specialist therapists providing care to people with respiratory disease, requiring cardiothoracic surgery and heart and lung transplantation. Alongside these roles, Justin is on the board of the Clinical Oversight Group for the RM Partners West London Cancer Alliance.
Justin completed his first degree, majoring in psychology, in 1993. He trained to diploma level in therapeutic hypnosis and psychotherapy in 1996. He qualified as a Speech and Language Therapist with a post-graduate diploma in Language and Communication Science from City University, London in 1999. In 2005, he completed a research masters with distinction at the Faculty of Medicine, Newcastle University. He was awarded his PhD from the Institute of Cancer Research in 2013 in which he evaluated swallowing outcomes following treatment with intensity-modulated radiotherapy (IMRT) for head and neck cancer.
As a specialist advisor to the Royal College of Speech and Language Therapists (RCSLT) in head and neck oncology and palliative care, Justin represents the organisation at a national level. He has also contributed to a number of key policy and position papers, including RCSLT’s response to the Assisted Dying Bill. He chaired their Head and Neck Oncology Clinical Excellence Network from 2014-2018 leading on the provision of continuing professional development opportunities. As well as encouraging members to present their clinical and research work, during his tenure speakers included patient experts and international leaders in the field of head and neck cancer rehabilitation. He currently sits on the COVID-19 Advisory Group for RCSLT and has contributed to a number of key position papers providing clinical practice guidance during the pandemic. In 2018, Justin was awarded a prestigious RCSLT Fellowship for his contribution to the profession.
He has served on scientific committees including the United Kingdom Swallowing Research Group (UKSRG), the swallowing committee for the American Speech-Language-Hearing-Association’s (ASHA) convention and the academic committee for the British Academic Conference in Otolaryngology (BACO). He currently serves on the scientific committee of the recently launched International Centre for Recurrent Head and Neck Cancer (IREC) based at The Royal Marsden and leads on the survivorship theme. Justin has represented the profession and Allied Health Professionals (AHPs) on a number of national work streams, including with Health Education England and NHS England. In 2019, he was elected as AHP Council Member for the British Association of Head and Neck Oncologists. In 2020, he was elected to the Council of the British Laryngological Association.
Justin has completed clinical observerships at a number of international centres of excellence. These include the Netherlands Cancer Institute-Antoni van Leeuwenhoek Hospital (NKI-AVL) in Amsterdam, the Center for Voice and Swallowing Research at Boston Medical Centre, Boston University School of Medicine, the Head and Neck Cancer Center, Massachusetts General Hospital, Boston and the Thyroid Head and Neck Cancer (THANC) Foundation Research Center, Beth Israel Medical Centre in New York. Justin also works with the head and neck cancer/ speech therapy service at the Tata Memorial Hospital in Mumbai where he holds a visiting faculty appointment and provides regular clinical education opportunities.
Justin’s academic work is focused on people diagnosed with head and neck/ lung cancers and airway stenosis. He is involved in several NIHR and Cancer Research UK-funded research studies. He collaborates with colleagues internationally including experts from Australia, Brazil, Canada, the Netherlands and the United States (see research).
Justin is committed to quality improvement and patient-centred care. He led a qualitative study evaluating the rehabilitation needs of people diagnosed with advanced lung cancer funded by the Royal Marsden Cancer Charity. He has led on a number of quality improvement initiatives using experience-based co-design (EBCD) and is a Point of Care Foundation Associate. Justin has been awarded Certificates of Excellence for Patient Care based on patient feedback submitted to IWantGreatCare.org, the online healthcare review site. He currently holds an Imperial Health Charity/ Imperial NIHR Biomedical Research Centre Post Doctoral Fellowship. As part of this award, he continues his work in partnership with healthcare professionals and patients to produce a Patient Concerns Inventory for people diagnosed with Airway Stenosis (PCI-AS).
Justin is a qualified coach and mentor with the Imperial College Coaching Academy and is also a member of the career development coaching and mentoring team at The Royal Marsden. He provides academic supervision and mentorship to clinicians completing post-graduate research programmes and has examined at doctoral level. He is a reviewer for several journals and has published a number of peer-reviewed papers on head and neck cancer, lung cancer, palliative care and ethical issues and spoken at meetings and conferences internationally. Most recently, he was a keynote speaker at the 22nd Annual Head and Neck Cancer Conference at the Milton J. Dance Jr. Head and Neck Cancer Center/ Johns Hopkins Head and Neck Surgery and Voice Center based at Greater Baltimore Medical Center.
In addition to running education programmes in cancer rehabilitation at the Royal Marsden, Justin is a Course Director for the highly evaluated Imperial Voice Therapy and Flexible Endoscopic Evaluation of Swallowing (FEES) courses held at Imperial College London. He was a faculty member and lectured on the Advanced FEES Course led by Professor Susan Langmore in 2021 and has also independently provided bespoke FEES training to clinical teams. As a Point of Care Foundation Associate, he contributes to EBCD training programmes.
Justin is a member of the British Association of Head and Neck Oncologists, British Laryngological Association, Dysphagia Research Society, European Head and Neck Society, European Mentoring and Coaching Council, Institute of Leadership and Management, and United Kingdom Swallowing Research Group.
et al., 2021, Perioperative instrumental swallowing evaluation in adult airway reconstruction: a retrospective observational cohort study, Clinical Otolaryngology, ISSN:1749-4478
et al., 2021, A prospective study of voice, swallow, and airway outcomes following tracheostomy for COVID‐19, The Laryngoscope, Vol:131, ISSN:0023-852X, Pages:E1918-E1925
et al., 2021, Adaptation and Validation of the Dynamic Imaging Grade of Swallowing Toxicity for Flexible Endoscopic Evaluation of Swallowing: DIGEST-FEES, Journal of Speech Language and Hearing Research, Vol:64, ISSN:1092-4388, Pages:1802-1810
et al., 2021, Laryngeal sarcoidosis and swallowing: what do we know about dysphagia assessment and management in this population?, Dysphagia, ISSN:0179-051X
et al., 2021, Not just dyspnoea: swallowing as a concern for adults with laryngotracheal stenosis undergoing airway reconstruction, Dysphagia, ISSN:0179-051X