Our five favourite media appearances of 2019

The past year has been a truly exciting one for the Academy. We have celebrated working with partners across the globe, welcomed a new Executive Director and launched our biggest and boldest public engagement project yet. These, amongst other successes have been reflected in the media coverage we received.

Below is a snapshot of five favourite media appearances of 2019 as chosen by Naomi Clarke, Senior Communications Officer (Media), and Sevda Boyanova, Communications Intern.

  1. Widespread coverage of our biggest and boldest public engagement project yet, The Departure lounge

In May, we launched The Departure Lounge, a pop-up shop which used the metaphor of travel, findings from medical science, and personal stories from the end of life to explore what it means to have a ‘good death’. This gained national and international coverage, including a feature on BBC London news. We were also delighted to have this project featured in the Observer in the week ahead of the installation opening.

  1. The Naked Scientists covered our joint symposium with the US National Academy of Medicine with not one, but two podcasts dedicated to the conference on behaviour change

In January we were delighted to welcome our North American counterpart, the US National Academy of Medicine, to London to jointly host their annual Rosenthal Symposium conference on behaviour chance to improve health for all. A producer from The Naked Scientists – a team of science communicators – came along and the result was two fantastic podcasts about the neuroscience of behaviour, one focusing on neuroscience and health and the second on how to change behaviour for the better.

  1. Widespread national coverage following our press briefing ahead of our scientific meeting on the developing brain

In March, we held out first ever scientific meeting, on the topic of the developing brain. Ahead of this we held a press briefing with several of the speakers. One of the messages from Professor Peter Jones FMedSci at the briefing was picked up by the journalists and went national, and then international. Peter was telling the press about maturation of the brain and said, “What we’re really saying is that to have a definition of when you move from childhood to adulthood looks increasingly absurd. It’s a much more nuanced transition that takes place over three decades.” This story was the health and science story of the day, covered by The Evening Telegraph, BBC Radio 1, The Times, The Sun and many more. 

  1. Our President warns of the threat of a no-deal Brexit

In June, our President, Professor Sir Robert Lechler PMedSci, wrote a letter to The Times warning of the potential impacts of a no-deal Brexit on UK medical research. He stressed that leaving the EU without a deal would have a disastrous effect on UK medical research and patients and that in the absence of an adequate replacement immigration system the UK could face a talent deficit that could disadvantage us for years to come.

  1. International Health Lecture keynote, Professor Patricia García, was the main feature on BBC World Service’s Health Check programme

At this year’s International Health Lecture Professor García talked about corruption in global health, telling the audience how corruption undermines the efforts of the health sector, and has an enormous human and financial cost. Professor García also got to share this message internationally, on the BBC’s World Service in an interview with Claudia Hammond for Health Check.


Thank you to all of our spokespeople in 2019, and we look forward to working with you again next year!

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