Honorary Degree to 'The Best Informed Patient in the World'
of Science (DSc), Wednesday 10th July, 11am
fearless and energetic champion of the rights of patients is to be
honoured by the University of Leicester.
Chairman of the Consumers’ Advisory Group for Clinical Trials Mrs Hazel
Thornton will receive an honorary Doctorate of Science from the
The award follows her trail-blazing work –as a cancer survivor herself - in championing patients’ causes and changing perceptions within the medical research and healthcare community.
Mrs Thornton said: “I am thrilled and very honoured to accept this honorary degree of DSc from the University of Leicester, and in company with other distinguished honorary graduands.”
Mary Dixon-Woods, Senior Lecturer in the Department of Epidemiology and Public
Health at the University of Leicester said: “Hazel was at the forefront of
those seeking to ensure that patients are properly informed about the risks and
benefits of participating in research and in undergoing procedures, including
breast cancer screening.
early letters to The Lancet following her diagnosis of breast cancer in
1991 demonstrate her dismay at the paternalistic and patronising attitudes
towards patients that then prevailed. With her characteristic flair and energy,
she set about establishing the Consumers Advisory Group for Clinical Trials,
which under her chairmanship made a massive contribution to ensuring that
researchers fully recognised the responsibilities they had towards patients and
how these should be respected. Many of the principles endorsed by the Group
inform best practice in clinical research today.
her retirement from the Group, Hazel has initiated an active and successful
programme of work with researchers at the University of Leicester and elsewhere,
exploring ways of ensuring that patients' priorities are at the centre of
research and healthcare. She publishes prolifically and is a respected member of
national and international research committees and teams, who are grateful to be
sensitised to the patient's perspective by someone so articulate, well informed,
and well motivated.
is also increasingly turning her attention to patients as partners in medical
education, helping medical students, including those at the University of
Leicester, to see patients as being their teachers just as much as their
lecturers and professors.”
Thornton, an Honorary Visiting Fellow in the Department of Epidemiology and
Public Health at the University of Leicester, has nearly 100 publications to her
credit, many of them in major academic journals, and has given conference
presentations to the most prestigious of audiences.
the 2002 University of Leicester degree congregations, twelve people will
receive honorary degrees. The ceremonies
will take place between the 10th and 12th July and will also mark the University
of Leicester’s 80th anniversary.
Peter Atkins, Doctor of Science (DSc)
Professor Maurice Beresford, FBA, Doctor of Letters (DLitt)
Dr Helaine Blumenfeld, Doctor of Letters (DLitt)
Ms Lynne Brindley, Doctor of Letters (DLitt)
Mr Tim Brooks, Doctor of Laws (LLD)
Mr Chris d'Lacey, Doctor of Letters (DLitt)
Mr Stephen Frears, Doctor of Letters (DLitt)
Professor Dame Julia Higgins FRS CBE, Doctor of Science (DSc)
Professor David King FRS, Doctor of Science (DSc)
Ms Tasmin Little, Doctor of Music (DMus)
Mrs Hazel Thornton, Doctor of Science (DSc)
Dr David Western, Doctor of Science (DSc)
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