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Professor Andrew Finlay

Clinical Professor

School of Medicine

Email
finlayay@cardiff.ac.uk
Telephone
+44 29207 42884
Campuses
UHW Main Building

Overview

Every day in the dermatology clinic there are people whose lives are being ruined by their skin disease. My main ambition has been to measure this impact, to help dermatologists put the patient’s perspective at the heart of clinical decisions. We first created disease specific questionnaires, such as the Psoriasis Disability Index.

Next we developed the Dermatology Life Quality Index (DLQI): that paper is one of the highest cited ever in clinical dermatology. The DLQI is now the most widely used measure in dermatology worldwide. Recently we focussed on the impact of skin disease on partners and families, revealing a huge hidden burden. The Family Reported Outcome Measure (FROM-16) is a generic measure that we validated across 26 different medical specialties.

I created the Diploma in Practical Dermatology, a highly successful distance learning international course to enhance GPs understanding of skin diseases. The second edition of the co-authored Dermatology at a Glance book for medical students is soon to be published.

Author of >400 papers, H-Index (Google Scholar) = 74.

Want to know how to CHAIR a meeting? Take a look at our two minute YouTube video

Biography

2009 – present: Professor of Dermatology (part-time), Cardiff University.

1999 – 2009: Professor of Dermatology and Head of Department of Dermatology, Cardiff University, and Honorary Consultant Dermatologist.

1987 – 1999: Honorary Senior Lecturer in Dermatology, University of Wales College of Medicine, Cardiff, and Consultant Dermatologist.

1982 – 1986: Honorary Lecturer in Dermatology, Glasgow University, and Consultant Dermatologist.

1978 – 1979: Research Fellow in Dermatology, Mount Sinai Medical Center of Greater Miami, Florida.

1967 – 1972: St Mary’s Hospital Medical School, London University.

Honours and awards

  • C.B.E. appointed 2010
  • British Society for Investigative Dermatology Medal, 2018
  • Herman Musaph Foundation Award and Medal, 2007
  • Austrian Society of Dermatology Hebra Medal, 2003
  • Dermatology Team of the Year award, 1994
  • Max Bonn Medal, 1971

Honorary memberships

  • British Association of Dermatologists
  • British Society for Paediatric Dermatology
  • Primary Care Dermatology Society
  • European Society of Dermatology and Psychiatry
  • Norwegian Dermatological Society
  • Finnish Dermatological Society
  • Florida Dermatology Society

Professional memberships

  • British Association of Dermatologists
  • British Medical Association
  • British Society for Paediatric Dermatology
  • British Society for Investigative Dermatology
  • European Academy of Dermatology and Venereology
  • Cardiff Medical Society

Academic positions

1999 – 2009: Professor of Dermatology and Head of Department of Dermatology, Cardiff University, and Honorary Consultant Dermatologist.

1987 – 1999: Honorary Senior Lecturer in Dermatology, University of Wales College of Medicine, Cardiff.

1982 – 1986: Honorary Lecturer in Dermatology, Glasgow University.

1978 – 1979: Research Fellow in Dermatology, Mount Sinai Medical Center of Greater Miami, Florida.

Speaking engagements

  • >120 invited UK lectures
  • >200 invited international lectures
  • Dowling Oration, 2000
  • Hebra Lecture, Austria, 2003
  • Albert Neisser Lecture, Poland 2007
  • World Congress plenary lecture, Seoul, 2011

    Committees and reviewing

    • British Journal of Dermatology Editorial Board member 2011 – present
    • Advisory Board, UK TREND 2016-2017
    • Chair, Executive Committee, UK Dermatology Clinical Trials Network 2010-2016
    • Executive Committee, European Society of Dermatology and Psychiatry 2008-2014
    • President, Cardiff Medical Society, 2010-2011
    • Co-Chair, Quality of Life Taskforce, European Academy of Dermatology and Venereology 2007-2009
    • Treasurer, British Skin Foundation, 2006-2009
    • British Association of Dermatologists: President 2000-2001, Treasurer 1992-95
    • Chairman, Royal College of Physicians Joint Committee on Dermatology 2001-2003
    • UK representative, Union of European Medical Specialties Dermatology Committee, 1998-2003
    • Chairman, Specialist Advisory Committee in Dermatology, 1997-2000

    Publications

    2020

    2019

    2018

    2017

    2016

    2015

    2014

    2013

    2012

    2011

    2010

    2009

    2008

    2007

    2006

    2005

    2004

    2003

    2002

    2001

    2000

    1998

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    1996

    1995

    1994

    1993

    1991

    1990

    1989

    • Salek, M.et al. 1989. Quality of life measurement in patients with psoriasis. Presented at: 18th European Symposium on Clinical Pharmacy, Nijmegen, Netherlands, 1989 Presented at Muller, N. F. and Hekster, Y. A. eds.Rational Use of Drugs: Proceedings of the 18th European Symposium on Clinical Pharmacy, Nijmegen, 1989. Progress in Clinical Pharmacy The Hague: Amsterdam Medical Press, SDU Publishers pp. 255-259.

    1985

    Teaching

    Diploma and MSc in Practical Dermatology

    General practitioners worldwide spend over 10% of their time helping people with skin disease. But most have only two weeks training as students. We recognised this huge need for education and so created the Diploma in Practical Dermatology (DPD). This was the first such distance learning diploma for GPs and has been extremely successful internationally. It has now been developed into the MSc in Practical Dermatology.

    For many years I led both the distance learning DPD and the full-time Diploma and MSc in Dermatology. These courses have resulted in over 4,000 doctors worldwide gaining detailed knowledge of clinical dermatology.

    Full time PhD and MSc students

    I have supervised PhD students and many MSc students, and acted as external examiner of >12 PhD students in the UK and abroad.

    Undergraduate education

    For decades I led the undergraduate dermatology education in Cardiff University. We were the earliest to initiate online lectures in the university, for dermatology. The second edition of our co-authored book “Dermatology at a Glance” for medical students is to be published in 2019.

    Management of postgraduate education

    For several years I led the postgraduate courses across the medical school in Cardiff University.

    Quality of Life measurement

    We wanted to change the way that dermatologists think, putting the patients’ perspective at the heart of clinical decisions. We wanted people to understand how essential it is to treat skin disease effectively. And we wanted new drugs to be judged on whether they really made a difference to people’s lives.

    The only way to do this would be to measure this impact of skin disease. But there were no dermatology quality of life measures. So we decided to make them.

    The very first, the Psoriasis Disability Index, was followed by our Cardiff Acne Disability Index. What we really needed was a simple questionnaire that could be used across all 2000 skin diseases. So we created the Dermatology Life Quality Index (DLQI), based on actual patient experiences, short and easy, with a very simple scoring system.

    The next challenge was to make the scores meaningful to clinicians, to help them make better clinical decisions. So we validated a DLQI score banding system that instantly explains score meaning. We also calculated the minimum score difference that patients consider reflects a meaningful change in their life quality.

    Although the DLQI was helping to change attitudes to quality of life in dermatology, we wanted to expand our ideas to benefit children and adolescents. This led to the Children’s DLQI (CDLQI) and the Teenagers Quality of Life questionnaire (T-QoL).

    Still more impacts of skin disease remained hidden. When we spoke to partners or relatives of people with skin disease, they then told us the many ways their lives were altered. We want the medical profession and the pharma industry to be aware of this and develop ways to alleviate this impact. That’s why we have created eczema specific and dermatology specific family measures, as well as a generic measure for use across all specialities, the Family Reported Outcome Measure (FROM-16)

    Our aim has been to lead and change thinking about quality of life in dermatology in order to make our specialty more responsive to the real needs of our patients.

    We provide a dedicated service to patients, clinicians, researchers and pharmaceutical companies to provide advice concerning the use of our 12 quality of life measures.

    Influences on clinical decision taking

    The core expertise of clinical medicine is taking clinical decisions in the best interests of patients. But there has been very little research on the influences on decision taking.

    Two PhD students have identified a range of appropriate and inappropriate influences on dermatology decision taking. One has focussed specifically on the decision whether or not to discharge a patient, the most frequent decision taken in outpatients, and one that has a profound impact on clinical service efficiency. This has informed training in decision taking in dermatology.

    Recent research studies

    • Validating e-delivery of quality of life questionnaires.
    • Development of validated formulae to convert DLQI to EQ5D utility data.
    • Systematic review of Quality of Life measures used in psoriasis randomised controlled trials.
    • Validation of app usage in recording Psoriasis Area and Symptoms Index (PASI).

    Current and planned studies

    • Involvement in European multicentre dermatology quality of life and stigma studies.
    • Further validation of FROM-16 in co-operation with centres throughout Wales.
    • Investigation of quality of life impact of hidradenitis suppurativa.

    Supervision

    Current supervision

    Dr Faraz Ali

    Research student

    Past projects

    • Co-supervisor (33%) for Nur Ainita Harun. Factors influencing discharge decisions in dermatology outpatients: checklist and educational methods to support appropriate discharge (awarded 2017).
    • Co-supervisor (50%) for Catherine Golics. The Conceptualisation, Development and Validation of a Generic Health-Related Family Quality of Life Measure (awarded 2013)