Awarded the James Spence Medal in 2022
Citation submitted in 2021
Professor Sir Andrew Pollard, BSc MA MBBS MRCP(UK) FRCPCH PhD DIC FHEA FIDSA FMedSci, is Professor of Paediatric Infection and Immunity at the University of Oxford, Honorary Consultant Paediatrician at Oxford Children’s Hospital and Vice Master of St Cross College, Oxford.
Well known in his field as an authority on the design, development and testing of vaccines for adults and children, over the past eighteen months, his capacity as Director of the Oxford Vaccine Group has catapulted him to wider recognition as a public figure in the fight against COVID-19. The development of the Oxford-AstraZeneca vaccine has had an immeasurable impact on the lives of children and young people across the world. His wider work has also had a profound impact on childhood immunisation in the UK, supporting the introduction of half of the vaccines currently given to children.
Andrew obtained his medical degree at St Bartholomew’s Hospital Medical School, University of London in 1989 and trained in Paediatrics at Birmingham Children’s Hospital, UK, specialising in Paediatric Infectious Diseases at St Mary’s Hospital, London, UK and at British Columbia Children’s Hospital, Vancouver, Canada. He obtained his PhD at St Mary’s Hospital, London, UK in 1999 studying immunity to Neisseria meningitidis in children and proceeded to work on anti-bacterial innate immune responses in children in Canada before returning to his current position at the University of Oxford, UK in 2001.
He chaired the UK’s NICE meningitis guidelines development group, the NICE topic expert group developing quality standards for management of meningitis and meningococcal septicaemia. His research includes the design, development and clinical evaluation of vaccines including those for meningococcal disease and enteric fever and leads studies using a human challenge model of (para)typhoid.
He runs surveillance for invasive bacterial diseases and studies the impact of pneumococcal vaccines in children in Nepal and leads a project on burden and transmission of typhoid in Nepal, Bangladesh and Malawi, and co-leads typhoid vaccine impact studies at these sites. He has supervised 37 PhD students and his publications includes over 500 manuscripts and books on various topics in paediatrics and infectious diseases.
His contributions to the overlapping fields of paediatrics, vaccinology and public health resulted in his appointment as the Government’s chief advisor on vaccines, and he became chair of the Department of Health’s Joint Committee on Vaccination in 2013. He is also chair of the European Medicine’s Agency Scientific Advisory Group on vaccines and an advisor to WHO.
He received the Bill Marshall award of the European Society for Paediatric Infectious Disease in 2013, the ESPID Distinguished Award for Education & Communication in 2015 and the Rosén von Rosenstein medal in 2019 awarded by the Swedish Paediatric Society and the Swedish Society of Medicine. He was elected to the Academy of Medical Sciences in 2016 and is an NIHR Senior Investigator. In 2020 he received the Oxford University Vice Chancellor’s Innovation Award in for his work on typhoid vaccines and in 2021 was knighted in the for services to public health, particularly during the Covid-19 pandemic.