Imperial College London

Imperial academic named British Heart Foundation Associate Medical Director

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Dr Sonya Babu-Narayan

Dr Sonya Babu-Narayan

Imperial's Dr Sonya Babu-Narayan has been appointed Associate Medical Director at The British Heart Foundation

Dr Babu-Narayan qualified in medicine 20 years ago and currently holds a BHF Intermediate Clinical Research Fellowship.

She is also Clinical Senior Lecturer at the National Heart and Lung Institute, Imperial College London, and Honorary Consultant Cardiologist at the Royal Brompton Hospital in London.

It’s a real honour to be joining the BHF. I know how the charity is trusted and valued by the heart and circulatory disease research community, as well as patients and their families – who are at the very centre of everything we do Dr Sonya Babu-Narayan

She is internationally recognised for her research to improve the care and quality of life of adults who were born with heart defects (adults with congenital heart disease).

Dr Babu-Narayan will work alongside existing Associate Medical Directors Professor Jeremy Pearson and Professor Metin Avkiran. She will also continue some of her clinical and research activity at Imperial College and the Royal Brompton Hospital.

Associate Medical Directors provide leadership and strategic direction to the vital research mission of the BHF, helping to ensure every pound donated is used to support research with the potential to make the maximum impact for those affected by heart and circulatory diseases.

Dr Babu-Narayan will particularly oversee the BHF’s clinical research portfolio.

Prestigious opportunity

Professor Edwin Chilvers, Head of National Heart and Lung Institute added: "I am delighted to hear about the appointment of Dr Sonya Babu-Narayan as Associate Clinical Director at the BHF; this is richly deserved and great for the NHLI."

Professor Sian Harding from Imperial's National Heart and Lung Institute added: "Imperial and the National Heart and Lung Institute are delighted that Sonya has been given this prestigious appointment and we will support her joint position in every way."

Dr Babu-Narayan is internationally recognised for her research to improve the care and quality of life of adults who were born with heart defects
Dr Babu-Narayan is internationally recognised for her research to improve the care and quality of life of adults born with heart defects

Professor Sir Nilesh Samani, Medical Director of the BHF, said: “We’re absolutely delighted to have appointed such a talented individual who is absolutely passionate about our mission. Sonya brings years of clinical experience, and a wealth of research knowledge.

“Sonya already has a close relationship with the BHF and understands our vision, particularly around patient involvement. She joins us at a critical time, not just in terms of the work of the BHF and our strategy for the future, but also the wider research environment. I’m confident she will help us continue to grow the scale and scope of our world-leading research.”

Dr Sonya Babu-Narayan said: “It’s a real honour to be joining the BHF. I know how the charity is trusted and valued by the heart and circulatory disease research community, as well as patients and their families – who are at the very centre of everything we do.

World-class research

“This is an exciting time to be taking on this new challenge; there’s a growing need to foster national and global collaboration to generate world-class cardiovascular research, new technologies – particularly data processing and artificial intelligence – are helping us to think in new ways, and we’re seeing more and more cases where patients have more than one long-term condition, which increases the complexity of both treatment and research.

“I’m proud to have an opportunity to serve the 7 million people in the UK living with heart and circulatory diseases, and to work towards a future where we beat the heartbreak from these devastating conditions.”

The British Heart Foundation is the UK’s largest funder of heart and circulatory disease research, all thanks to the generosity of its many supporters. Between 2015 and 2020 the charity aims to fund more than £500 million of research that could save and improve the lives of millions of people living with heart and circulatory disease in the UK, and worldwide.

See the press release of this article

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Kate Wighton

Kate Wighton
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