Associate Fellow, Centre on Global Health Security
Professor Sir Liam Donaldson
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Professor Sir Liam Donaldson is recognized as an international champion of healthcare quality, patient safety and public health. He is a former vice-chairman of the World Health Organization's executive board.

He is the World Health Organization’s envoy for patient safety and chairman of the independent monitoring board for the Polio Eradication Programme. In the UK, he is chancellor of Newcastle University, professor of Public Health at the London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine, and honorary distinguished professor at Cardiff University.

Sir Liam was the chief medical officer for England, and the United Kingdom's chief medical adviser, from 1998-2010. During this time he held critical responsibilities across the whole field of public health and healthcare and advised secretaries of state for health, the prime minister and other government ministers. He produced landmark reports that set health policy and legislation in many fields. 


  • Population health and public health protection
  • Healthcare quality
  • Patient safety
  • Health policy
  • Communication in health


2016 -

Professor of Public Health, London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine

2009 -

Chancellor Newcastle University


Chair of Health Policy, Imperial College London

2011 -Patient Safety Envoy, World Health Organization 
1998-2010Chief Medical Officer for England, UK Government Chief Medical Adviser

Regional Director Northern and Yorkshire NHS Executive


Regional Medical Officer Northern Regional Health Authority


A range of academic and clinical posts in various parts of the UK


  • Allegranzi B, Nejad SB, Combescure C, Graafmans W, Attar H, Donaldson LJ, et al. 'Burden of endemic health-care-associated infection in developing countries: Systematic review and meta-analysis'. Lancet 2011;377(9761):228-41.
  • Donaldson LJ, Panesar SS, McAvoy PA, Scarrott DM. 'Identification of poor performance in a national medical workforce over 11 years: an observational study'. BMJ Qual Saf. 2014 Feb;23(2):147-52.
  • Rutter PD, Donaldson LJ. 'Mandatory polio vaccination for travellers: protecting global public health'. Lancet. 2014 May 17;383(9930):1695-7.
  • Donaldson LJ, Panesar SS, Darzi A. 'Patient-safety-related hospital deaths in England: thematic analysis of incidents reported to a national database, 2010-2012'. PLoS Med. 2014 Jun 24;11(6):e1001667.
  • Donaldson LJ. 'The wisdom of patients and families: ignore it at our peril'. BMJ Qual Saf 2015;0:1–2.