Monash professor recognised by major US medicine academy

Professor Paul Myles, Director of the Department of Anaesthesia and Perioperative Medicine, The Alfred and Monash University, has been honoured by an invitation to become a member of the prestigious US National Academy of Medicine (NAM). He is the first anaesthesiologist outside of North America to be elected to the Academy.

Professor Myles is one of only eight Australians whose achievements have been recognised by election to NAM.  “I’m honoured to be part of this academy of talented individuals who work together to influence the future of medicine and health,” Professor Myles said. “The election acknowledges my long-time engagement in patient-centred research. However, the greater value is being able to contribute to positive change through the work of such an influential organisation,” he said.

The NAM, established in 1970 as the Institute of Medicine (IOM), is an independent organisation of eminent professionals from diverse fields, who have made important contributions to health, medicine, and science. “This is the group that published the landmark report on patient safety in healthcare, ‘To Err is Human’.  It fundamentally reshaped health systems around the world by acknowledging the existence and impact of errors in medicine. More recent work has focussed on the opioid epidemic in the United States.”

Professor Myles, an anaesthetist and leading researcher in his field, is well-known for his active roles in clinical trials, and in reviews that help improve clinical practice globally. His work has been recognised by several other professional bodies and universities in the UK and Sweden. In 2017 he received the Excellence in Research Award from the American Society of Anesthesiologists.

That year, Professor Myles and his team won the Australian Trial of the Year for their global study that shows that tranexamic acid (TXA), a drug that prevents excessive blood loss during surgery, can nearly halve the number of people who suffer complications with bleeding following open heart and other major surgery. The award recognises remarkable Australians who conduct ground-breaking clinical trials.

He is currently involved in an Australian-first study on the use of nitrous oxide as a treatment for severe depression.

Professor Myles was the founding Chair of the ANZCA Clinical Trials Group, is an Australian National Health and Medical Research Council Practitioner Fellow, and a Fellow of the Australian Academy of Health and Medical Science. He chairs the Department of Anaesthesia and Perioperative Medicine.

He has published more than 300 articles and has generated more than $35 million in medical research grants.

The NAM memberships were announced at the organisation’s annual meeting on 21 October at the National Academy of Sciences Building in Washington, DC. Professor Myles and other new members will be formally welcomed to the academy during next year’s annual meeting, which is also the NAM’s 50th Anniversary, scheduled for 17-19 October, 2020.

The NAM serves alongside the National Academy of Sciences and the National Academy of Engineering as advisors to the nation and the international community.

See more about the NAM election of its new members at https://nam.edu/national-academy-of-medicine-elects-100-new-members/