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Ian Wells - Consultant Computer Scientist at the Royal Surrey County Hospital

Dr Ian Wells originally trained as a chemist, and after completing his first degree in this subject at the University of Oxford he worked in industry for several years before deciding that devising better ways of etching identification marks in hard metals had limited career prospects. He joined the NHS in 1976 as a trainee Clinical Biochemist in the Epsom hospitals, where his interest in computing began to develop when he was asked to investigate ways of improving the performance of the laboratory’s computer-controlled continuous flow analyser. He moved to St. Luke’s Hospital at Guildford in 1980, and soon found that computing was taking over from chemistry as his main activity. His far-sighted Professor suggested that he should consider making a career in clinical computing, and after several years of part-time study he was awarded the first ever PhD in Computing at the University of Surrey. His subject, investigating the potential application of intelligent knowledge based (‘expert’) systems for supporting real-time clinical activity, continues to be his main research interest. He moved to the Department of Medical Physics at the Royal Surrey County Hospital in 1997, where he heads the Clinical Computing Section. This is responsible for developing and maintaining a range of specialized clinical systems including SweetP, a novel application for supporting the care of diabetic patients. He maintains his links with the Department of Computing at the University of Surrey where he is a part-time lecturer, teaching an MSc module on Intelligent Information Systems, mentoring PhD students and encouraging health-related research projects. He is also regularly invited to lecture at conferences, and has published over sixty articles and papers his field. He was elected to the Scientific Advisory Group of the Computing in Clinical Laboratories conferences in 1997, and will be organizing the next meeting when it comes back to the UK in June 2004. He is also a member of a national committee which is investigating professional standards and development for computing and informatics staff in the NHS.

Contact details:

Dr Ian Wells MA PhD CEng MBCS
Consultant Computer Scientist
Department of Medical Physics
Royal Surrey County Hospital
United Kingdom
Tel: +44 (0)1483 464 039
Email: ian.wells@royalsurrey.nhs.uk




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