Dr Mark Vanderpump, Consultant Endocrinologist at The Physicians’ Clinic (TPC) was elected as President of British Thyroid Association (BTA) at the end of March 2014 and is settling into his three-year presidency. This organisation represents the clinical specialists, doctors and scientists in the UK who manage patients with thyroid disease or are researching into the thyroid disorders.
Dr Vanderpump said: “It is a great honour and privilege to be elected as BTA President. The main strengths of the organization are the high quality of the membership, the increasingly popular scientific meetings and the continuing development of our liaison with the British Thyroid Foundation, which represents patients with thyroid disorders.”
Important thyroid issues
Thyroid disease in pregnancy is an increasingly important area Dr Vanderpump hopes to help with the BTA's efforts to provide clear treatment guidance. Other areas of focus include the emerging issue of iodine deficiency in young women in the UK, which needs to be recognised and addressed by the public health authorities. Dr Vanderpump also highlights the continuing controversies regarding the way primary hypothyroidism is assessed and managed.
“This remains a difficult area of clinical practice in which endocrinologists are often criticised for practising evidence-based medicine,” he explains. Dr Vanderpump hopes to build on the acknowledged strengths of the BTA by promoting best practice in clinical and basic thyroidology and by continuing to recognize and focus on the needs of patients with thyroid disorders.
“The BTA recognise that engagement and education of our primary care colleagues is crucial in supporting patients with thyroid disorders. Many patients with thyroid disorders are increasingly being denied access to specialist input so it is crucial that the BTA provides support to primary care teams who will often be providing care for the majority of patients. The BTA will be required to lead on setting high quality standards for management of patients in the future NHS and providing patients with information about their thyroid disorder.”