Derek Ward qualified from the University of Bristol in 1993 and worked in a number of junior hospital posts in Stoke-on-Trent, Bristol, and Birmingham, before completing his MRCP(UK) in 1996. Following this, he took up a research post in environmental epidemiology based at Birmingham Heartlands Hospital, working on a large air pollution panel study that led to a number of publications and his MD in 2002.
After a brief period as a Registrar in General Practice, Derek began his Public Health training in the West Midlands in 1999. During this time, he rotated through general public health and specialist health protection posts in Birmingham, Worcester, the Regional Public Health Laboratory, Regional Communicable Disease Surveillance Unit, and the HPA Centre for Infections in Colindale, London. His training included time at the University of Birmingham, where his placement included work on health technology assessments, including a systematic review of behavioural interventions to reduce sexually transmitted infections, and a collaboration with the National Prescribing Centre on new drug monographs.
Derek was appointed as a Consultant in Communicable Disease Control for the Health Protection Agency West Midlands in 2005, where he took on lead roles for healthcare acquired infections and sexual health and HIV. During this time, he published research on the surveillance of sexually transmitted infections, response to a city-wide outbreak of syphilis, and acted as a clinical expert to the West Midlands Health Technology Assessment Collaboration.
Since January 2010, Derek has been Deputy Director of the NIHR Horizon Scanning Centre, taking the lead for new and emerging pharmaceuticals.
Health Services Research; Evidence Based Health Care; Innovation; Horizon Scanning; Diffusion and Uptake of New Health Technologies; New Pharmaceuticals; Health Technology Assessment; Communicable Disease Control; Surveillance; Sexually Transmitted Infections and HIV
CURRENT RESEARCH ACTIVITY
Derek Ward’s current research interests include the development, marketing, diffusion, and uptake of new technologies; the evaluation of horizon scanning methods, processes, and outputs; future horizons; and international activities in the field.
He is involved in projects to explore the relationship between burden of disease and innovation in health technologies (pharmaceuticals, devices, diagnostics, and procedures) in developed world health systems; identifying and characterising trends in pharmaceutical innovation rates and cost inflation across different disease areas; the accuracy of methods used to predict the future of health services; the development and commercialisation of new point of care tests for infectious disease; and the changing evidence requirements for the introduction of new technologies.
PREVIOUS RESEARCH ACTIVITY
Health technology assessment
Previously undertook systematic review and meta-analysis of the effectiveness of behavioural interventions in reducing STIs in genitourinary medicine clinic patients on behalf of the West Midlands Health Technology Assessment Collaboration (WMHTAC), and acted as clinical adviser to WMHTAC project considering the role of probiotics in the prevention of antibiotic associated diarrhoea. Also contributed to the monograph series ‘New Drugs in Clinical Development’ produced by the National Prescribing Centre, Liverpool.
Sexually transmitted infections and HIV:
Undertook research on patterns of sexually transmitted infection in older age groups, patterns of chlamydia testing and results using routine surveillance and laboratory data, and used epidemiological methods to describe the evolution and subsequent control of a syphilis outbreak in the UK.
Conducted a two-year project recruiting 162 children from five primary schools across Birmingham and Sandwell into a panel study. Compared day to day changes in the children’s’ respiratory health over twelve weeks with levels of particulate and gaseous pollutants and specific acid and anion species using a time series multilevel modelling approach.
OI Martino, DJ Ward, C Packer, S Simpson, A Stevens. Innovation and burden of disease: retrospective observational study of new and emerging health technologies reported by the EuroScan network from 2000 to 2009. Value in Health 2012; 15: 376-380.
A Tayo., J Ellis, L Linden Phillips, S Simpson, DJ Ward. Emerging point of care tests for influenza: innovation or status quo. Influenza and Other Respiratory Viruses 2011; 2012 6(4): 291–298.
Bodley-Tickell A.T., Olowokure B., Bhaduri S., White D.J., Ward D., Ross J.D.C., Smith G., Duggal H.V., Goold P., on behalf of the West Midlands STI Surveillance Project (2008), Trends in sexually transmitted infections (other than HIV) in older persons: analysis of data from an enhanced surveillance system, Sexually Transmitted Infections, 84: 312 – 317
Yarlagadda S., Acharya S., Goold P., Ward D.J., Ross J.D.C. (2007), A syphilis outbreak: recent trends in infectious syphilis in Birmingham, UK in 2005 and control strategies, International Journal of STI & AIDS, 18: 410-412
Ward D.J., Rowe B., Pattison H., Taylor R.S., Radcliffe K.W. (2005), Reducing the risk of sexually transmitted infections in genitourinary medicine clinic patients: a systematic review and meta-analysis of behavioural interventions, Sexually Transmitted Infections, 81: 386-393
Scheike I., Connock M., Taylor R., Fry-Smith A., Ward D. (2005), Probiotics for the prevention of antibiotic associated diarrhoea: a systematic review. Report number 56, Department of Public Health and Epidemiology, University of Birmingham, ISBN No. 07044 25807, http://www.rep.bham.ac.uk/reports_list.shtml last accessed 22/03/2011
Ward D.J., Ayres J.G. (2004), Particulate air pollution and panel studies in children: a systematic review, Occupational and Environmental Medicine, 61: e13 doi:10.1136/oem.2003.007088
Walters S., Ward D.J. (2004), “Lower Respiratory Disease”. In: Stevens A., Raftery J., Mant J, Simpson S. (eds), Health care needs assessment: the epidemiologically based needs assessment reviews. First series, Second edition, Abingdon: Radcliffe Publishing Ltd.
Ward D.J., Roberts K.T., Jones N., Harrison R.M., Ayres J.G., Hussain S., Walters S. (2002), Effects of daily variation in outdoor particulates and ambient acid species in normal and asthmatic children, Thorax, 57: 489-502
Ward D.J., Ayres J.G. (2000), “The Epidemiology of Pneumonia and Acute Bronchitis”, chapter 7 In: Annesi-Maesano I., Gulsvik A., Viegi G (eds), Respiratory Epidemiology in Europe, European Respiratory Monograph 5: 105-127