Professor Tim Clark, former Dean of the United Medical and Dental Schools of Guy’s and St Thomas’ Hospital, has passed away at the age of 84 years. Professor Clark was a renowned physician, specialising in pulmonary medicine. He qualified into medicine in the 1960s, a time when there was little support for asthma sufferers yet with increasing number of deaths attributable to asthma.
His tireless commitment to health improvements, led him to conclude that the arrival of inhalers had made patients believe that they didn’t require any other treatment, giving them a false sense of security, and it was therefore the widespread under-use of steroids, as opposed to overuse, that was causing this spike in deaths. Professor Clark then co-authored ‘Asthma’ - which became a leading text in the field, studied closely by nurses, GPs and other specialists in the field.
After working at several hospitals across London, he became a consultant at Guy’s Hospital. He was subsequently selected to form part of the House of Commons’ social services committee in the early 1980s. After a period as Sub-Dean of Guy’s Hospital Medical School, in 1984, he became Dean of the United Medical and Dental Schools of Guy’s and St Thomas’ Hospital, which subsequently became King’s School of Medicine and the Dental Institute. He continued in this role for over 5 years, prior to moving to the Brompton Hospital full time and taking up the position of Director of the National Heart and Lung Institute at Imperial College. He is most fondly remembered by all our staff who worked alongside him.
Richard Trembath, Executive Dean said, “Tim taught me as a medical student and indeed I held my first locum house officer appointment on his clinical firm. I recall his calm words of support and encouragement and my own pride in working for a clinician who was known around the world for his work on the pathogenesis and treatment of asthma. The “Green Book” he co-authored on the subject, sits squarely on my library shelf.”
Professor Tim Clark was an author of over 200 papers, textbooks and scientific articles on respiratory medicine, additionally serving as vice-chairman of the National Asthma Campaign for almost a decade. He will be remembered, among much more, for his ongoing commitment to improving the lives of asthma sufferers.