2019 Speakers

 

The Hon Mr Justice Robin Spencer

 

 

The Hon. Mr Justice Spencer, is a judge of the High Court of England and Wales.

He was educated at The King's School, Chester and Emmanuel College, Cambridge. He was called to the bar at Gray's Inn in 1978 and became a bencher there in 2005. He was made a QC in 1999, deputy judge of the High Court from 2001-2010, and judge of the High Court of Justice (Queen's Bench Division) since 2010. In 2013 he was appointed as Presiding Judge on the South Eastern Circuit.

 

 

 

Henry Pitchers
 Barrister, No5 Chambers

 

Henry’s practice is predominantly comprised of high value and/or complex personal injury and clinical negligence work.

Henry’s current caseload includes a wide range of brain injuries, spinal injuries arising from trauma, and cases involving amputation.  Henry also deals with complex orthopaedic cases such as high velocity traffic accidents that can give rise to severe polytrauma.

He is routinely instructed in cases in which multi-million pound claims are advanced for future care and case management. Several of his claims have resulted in orders for periodical payments well in excess of 200k per annum.  One recent case settled in early summer of 2019 resulted in a settlement with the capitalised equivalent of £22M.

Henry takes a particular interest in accommodation and complex future loss of earnings claims, especially projecting career paths for young claimants, including potentially highly paid professionals.

Henry is a regular speaker on matters concerning catastrophic and serious injuries. He is also a contributing editor to Butterworth’s Personal Injury Litigation Service.

 

 

Mr Aman Coonar
 Consultant Surgeon

Mr Coonar qualified as a doctor in London. His general surgery and cardiothoracic surgery training was at Guy's, St Thomas's, King's, Royal Brompton and the London Chest Hospitals. In 2005-2007, Mr Coonar worked at the Toronto General Hospital in Canada and took fellowships in general thoracic surgery and lung transplant surgery.  Mr Coonar has been a consultant at Royal Papworth Hospital since 2007 and his practice is in pure thoracic surgery. He works closely with a large team including other surgeons, specialist nurses, radiologists and physicians. Mr Coonar was appointed President of the Royal Society of Medicine Cardiothoracic Section in December 2013.

He handles benign diseases and cancer.

 

 

Tom Quick

 Consultant Surgeon

Tom Quick was educated at Manchester Grammar School and Magdalene College Cambridge.  He graduated in Art History with his MB exemptions before moving on to UCL Hospitals to complete his undergradute medical training. After Basic surgical training in London and Sydney (NSW, Australia) he completed his Orthopaedic training on the renowned Bristol rotation. Tom then was then awarded a twelve month Paediatric Orthopaedic fellowship at The Westmead Children’s Hospital in Sydney, Australia where he worked in clinical and basic science capacity in both general Paediatric Orthopaedics and  upper limb paediatric surgery. Tom worked in the Peripheral Nerve Injury Unit at the Royal National Orthopaedic Hospital at Stanmore as a Fellow for 2 years prior to taking up his Consultant post in 2013.

 

 

Patricia Hitchcock QC

 Barrister, Cloisters Chambers

 

Before coming to the Bar, Patricia read English at Oxford and then worked for 10 years as an academic and non-fiction book editor in the UK and USA. She was called to the Bar in 1988 and became a tenant at Cloisters in 1990.

 

Her early practice was dominated by criminal defence work, with over 100 Crown Court trials. Patricia developed a particular interest in mental health and medical issues and at under ten years' call left the criminal courts to focus on medical law. She has since built a substantial specialist reputation and is consistently ranked highly in both Chambers and Partners and Legal 500 Clinical Negligence and Personal Injury. Patricia was appointed Queen's Counsel in 2011 and has maintained her varied and extremely busy practice in silk.


Patricia  co-authors the Claims of Utmost Severity division of Butterworths Personal Injury Litigation Service and writes the Experts chapter in Lewis & Buchan: Clinical Negligence (Bloomsbury Professional).

 

 

Marcus Grant
Barrister

 Temple Garden Chambers

Marcus specialises in Personal Injury and Insurance litigation. He has 25 years' experience at the Bar. His injury practice focuses on traumatic brain injury and chronic pain and spinal litigation, mainly for Claimants and motor insurance fraud litigation for various Insurer panels. He is noted for his leadership in exploring recent neurological and chronic pain developments in the Courts and is regarded for his insight into the nuances of the medicine and his tenacity in handling medical experts in his specialist areas.

He has tested the legitimacy of surveillance before the Courts, challenging the authenticity of the footage and the legitimacy of the techniques used to obtain it including the case of Samson v. Ali. He has litigated cases where the use of covert and overt recordings of expert appointments have proved to be critical to the outcome of cases. Many of his cases fight to trial. He is noted for his thoroughness and tenacity on medical issues and in his dealings with medical experts. He is a member of Lincoln's Inn and teaches on the Inn's Student Advocacy Training Programme. He is on the PI panel of the Bar Pro Bono Unit.

 

 

Dr Gaby Parker

 Consultant Clinical Neuropsychologist

 

Dr Parker is a Consultant Clinical Psychologist & Neuropsychologist, gaining her doctorate in Clinical Psychology in 2006 from University College London and Postgraduate Diploma in Applied Clinical Neuropsychology in 2011 from the University of Glasgow.   Since qualifying Dr Parker has worked within a range of neurorehabilitation contexts in both NHS and independent practice across London and the East of England regions. In her current full-time NHS role she is the Consultant Lead for Acquired Brain Injury across Hertfordshire. In her independent and medicolegal practice Dr Parker focuses on complex interdisciplinary community neurorehabilitation following acquired brain injuries spanning the spectrum of severity from subtle to profound disability, including those co-occurring with wider catastrophic injury (e.g., spinal injury, polytrauma) and those associated with clinical negligence.

Dr Parker sits on the Mental Capacity Advisory Group to the British Psychological Society, recently co-authoring 2019 guidance for UK psychologists regarding assessment of mental capacity and best interests decisions.

 

Dr Jon Valentine
 Pain Medicine Consultant

 

Jon qualified MB ChB at Leeds University in 1986 and became a member of the Royal College of Physicians of London (MRCP) in 1989 and a fellow of the Royal College of Anaesthetists (FRCA) in 1992.

He was granted Foundation Fellowship of the Faculty of Pain Medicine of the Royal College of Anaesthetists (FFPMRCA) in October 2007 and was elected to Fellowship of the Royal College of Physicians (FRCP) in May 2009.

He was appointed Consultant in Anaesthetics and Pain Management at Norfolk & Norwich University Hospital in October 1996. From September 2001, his NHS practice was dedicated to pain management, which continued until March 2016.

He remains in clinical practice at the Spire Norwich Hospital.

Jon has experience in the management of a wide range of painful conditions including those that can result from personal injury. This includes chronic conditions such as complex regional pain syndrome, neuropathic pain, lumbar spinal pain & sciatica.

 

 

Dr Rajesh Munglani

 Pain Medicine Consultant

 

Dr Rajesh Munglani qualified from St George’s Hospital, University of London, in 1985. Subsequently gaining experience in A & E, paediatric medicine and eventually gaining the Fellowship of the Royal College of Anaesthetists. He developed a strong research interest in the neurobiology of chronic pain states and also chronic spinal regional pain syndromes including reflex sympathetic dystrophies. He was appointed John Farman Professor of The Royal College of Anaesthetists in 1996 for his contribution to pain research.

In 2000 he accepted a post as Consultant in Pain Medicine and Lead Clinican at the West Suffolk Hospital in Bury St Edmunds and developed an expanded multidisciplinary pain service.  In 2009 he became and continues to be an officer for the Interventional Pain Medicine Group of the British Pain Society. In 2011-2014 was elected to the Council of the British Pain Society. He also founded the annual Cambridge Medicolegal Conference in 2011. In 2016 Dr Munglani was appointed as an Honorary Consultant  to St Thomas' Hospital London.

 

 

Dr Andreas Goebel,

Hon Consultant in Pain Medicine, The Walton Centre, Liverpool

 

 

I trained in Medicine at the University of Würzburg, Germany. My anaesthetic and pain medicine training was in Würzburg and with the Oxford rotation in the UK. I completed further training in pain medicine at University College London Hospitals, and interventional modules in Hamburg, Germany and Nottwill, Switzerland. In between my clinical training I completed a two-year postdoctoral research period in post-trauma immunology at the Brigham and Women’s Hospital, Harvard Medical School, Boston MA. While in Boston I won a Harvard Trauma Research Prize. I have been a consultant since 2006 (at the Walton Centre since 2007) and a Senior Lecturer at the University Liverpool from 2008. My main professional interest is to develop new effective treatments for chronic pain. I am interested to find out how the immune system might contribute to chronic pain and how it may be treated to relief pain, particularly in the case of Complex Regional Pain Syndrome.

 

 

 

Professor George Ikkos
Consultant Psychiatrist

 

 

George is Lead Consultation Liaison Psychiatrist Royal National Orthopaedic Hospital NHS; also, Director of the RSM (Royal Society of Medicine) programme “Psychiatry in Dialogue with Neuroscience Medicine and Society”, Medical Examiner General Medical Council and Royal College of Psychiatrists (RCPsych) representative on the British Society of Rheumatology Guidelines Working Group on Management of Chronic Pain in Inflammatory Arthritis. In 2014, he was elected Honorary Fellow RCPsych.

He has served as RSM first President Pain Medicine Section and President Psychiatry Section; also, Honorary Visiting Research Professor London South Bank University, Treasurer Association of Clinical Professors of Psychiatry and RCPsych representative on the Royal College of Physicians Guidelines Working Group on Recognition and Management of Complex Regional Pain Syndrome (CRPS).

 

 

Pankaj Madan

 Barrister, 12 King’s Bench Walk

 

 

Deputy District Judge: 2010- Present

Pankaj specialises in Catastrophic and Life-Changing Injury with specialist expertise in Brain Injury, severe limb injury and high-value Pain and Complex Regional Pain Syndrome (CRPS) claims.  He is a Deputy District Judge and has considerable expertise in costs management of high value cases for both Claimants and Defendants.  He is experienced in claims of the utmost severity exceeding £5 million. He often appears against Leading Counsel on his own. He has ongoing cases with a potential value up to £18 million.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Emma Zeb

 Head of Personal Injury, St John’s Chambers

 

 

Emma joined St John’s Chambers from a specialist personal injury and clinical negligence chambers in London in 1999, and now sits as a Recorder.

Emma’s practice in personal injury consists of high value catastrophic injury and fatality cases and she deals with all types of clinical negligence claims with particular experience in pressure sore cases and failure to diagnose cancer cases.

As Head of the Personal Injury and Inquests team, Emma regularly represents the interests of the bereaved family as well as public / private bodies and agencies. Emma has been appointed junior counsel to the crown and in particular undertakes complex inquest work for the prison estate.

 

 

 

 

Dr Michael Spencer

Honorary Consultant Psychiatrist

 

Dr Spencer qualified from the University of Cambridge. He was a Clinical Research Fellow and Honorary Clinical Lecturer at the University of Edinburgh, and MRC Clinician Scientist Fellow at the University of Cambridge. He currently holds positions as Visiting Research Fellow at the University of Cambridge and Visiting Senior Research Fellow at the National University of Singapore.

Dr Spencer is Honorary Consultant Psychiatrist in the Department of Pain Medicine at West Suffolk Hospital, where he provides psychiatric input to a multidisciplinary pain clinic.  His research interests include psychological aspects of chronic pain conditions.

 

He is a Council Member of the Section of Pain Medicine at the Royal Society of Medicine and Assistant Editor of the Journal of Observational Pain Medicine.

 

 

 

Paul Mallett

Consultant Psychiatrist

 

 

Dr Paul Mallett is a Consultant Adult Psychiatrist. He is responsible for an Assertive Outreach Team working with patients with high levels of disability and treatment resistance in London.  He has a successful private practice in the City of London 'square mile' with an emphasis on occupational stress and more that 10 years’ medico legal experience in a variety of settings. He also has considerable experience in the organisational aspects of health care having been Medical Director of his NHS Trust for 4 years.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Stuart  McKechnie QC

Barrister, 9 Gough Square Chambers

 

Stuart was sworn in as Queen's Counsel by the Lord Chancellor on 26 February 2018. Stuart is a leading personal injury and clinical negligence practitioner who specialises in representing those who have been catastrophically injured. Band 1 Leading Junior in Personal Injury in the 2017 editions of Chambers & Partners and Legal 500. Described in the 2017 edition of Legal 500 as “Without doubt the leading personal injury junior”. Editorial Board Member of the Judicial College Guidelines for The Assessment of General Damages. Co-author of the APIL Guide to Catastrophic Injury Claims and contributing editor to Kemp: Practice & Procedure. Instructed by many of the leading personal injury and clinical negligence firms across the UK. Involved in cases collectively worth over £100 million in 2016 including JDF v. Hampshire County Council, which is thought to be the highest personal injury award ever made / approved by a court in the UK at £28 million capitalised

 

 

Deborah Blythe

 Partner, Head of Clinical Negligence Russell Cooke

 

 

Deborah is a partner and head of the clinical negligence and personal injury team.

 

Deborah specialises in complex and high value claims and has particular expertise and interest in cases relating to birth related brain injury in babies, the treatment and diagnosis of many types of cancer particularly breast cancer, and dental claims. A recognised 'leader' in the field of clinical negligence for several years, Deborah has built up extensive experience in handling claims of all sizes, covering a wide range of injurious conditions including brain injury, spinal injury, back and general orthopaedic injuries, bowel, bladder and psychological injuries. She has acted in a number of cases which have established some important legal principles including cases involving issues in relation to Limitation - one of which was successfully taken to the Court of Appeal. Reported cases include: Darnley-Croydon Hospitals NHS Trust.

 

 

 

 

 

Julian Benson

 Barrister, Guildhall Chambers

 

 

Julian works exclusively on complex and/or high value claimant and defendant work, typically involving brain injuries, catastrophic limb injuries (and amputations), chronic pain syndromes and disorders, and psychiatric injuries, frequently against leading counsel. Julian is a co-organiser, speaker and co-chair of the annual Peterhouse Medico-Legal Conference in Cambridge; and Organiser of the highly regarded Guildhall Chambers Personal Injury seminars for over a decade. In recent years he has addressed the Royal Society of Medicine (pain division) and the biannual conference of the British Orthopaedic Foot and Ankle Society ("BOFAS")

 

In 2012 Julian wrote "A Barrister's Guide to Your Personal Injury Claim", a not-for-profit book aiming to explain the content and procedure of personal injury litigation in an entirely neutral manner, to increase understanding among claimants and thereby reduce costs and promote settlements.