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04 September 2014

Bristol Royal Hospital for Children welcomes new specialist

The South West's dedicated children's hospital has welcomed a new member of staff to its expert clinical team.

Consultant paediatric cardiac anaesthetist Dr Tim Murphy has joined the staff at Bristol Royal Hospital for Children from the Freeman Hospital in Newcastle.

Dr Murphy's area of speciality is relatively unusual - out of the several thousand anaesthetists in the UK, probably fewer than one to two per cent are formally trained in paediatric cardiac anaesthesia.  Across the nine paediatric cardiac surgical centres in England, this means there are currently fewer than 60 paediatric cardiac anaesthetists.

Dr Murphy's route into medicine was also an unusual one. After studying for a degree in politics, philosophy and economics at Oxford, he worked as an investment banker for four years, starting his medical degree at the age of 27, at the medical school of St Bartholomew's Hospital in London.

After training in London for four years, and then as a registrar in and around the Bristol area, Dr Murphy's first job as a registrar was in Cheltenham. Now, seven years later, he has returned to the south west to take up his new role.

He said: "It's fantastic to be working at such a big, modern children's hospital, where all the services and specialities are under one roof and to be joining a team of experts who are challenged with treating sick children who often present with highly complex and life threatening conditions.  

"I did a lot of my training at Bristol and really enjoyed my time here, so it's very nice to come back, and to work with some of the people who helped train me and set me on this path - Drs Ian Jenkins, Pat Weir and Pete Murphy in particular. I look forward to helping build on the vast expertise that has been built up here over many years to really cement Bristol's reputation as a centre for excellence."

Dr Murphy has also worked closely with cardiac surgeon Professor Massimo Caputo, as the pair have previously visited Trinidad to help treat children with cardiac conditions there.

Dr Bryony Strachan, clinical chair for Women's and Children's Services at University Hospitals Bristol NHS Foundation Trust, said: "We're delighted to welcome Dr Murphy to our team. He brings a high level of skill and a wealth of experience which will complement the dedicated and skilled clinical teams at the Bristol Royal Hospital for Children. We look forward to working with him."