Andrew Pollard talks to Professor Maheshi Ramasamy about her pandemic work as a hospital consultant treating extremely sick patients in intensive care. They also discuss her research career in vaccines and infectious diseases.
Professor Maheshi Ramasamy is a consultant physician at the John Radcliffe Hospital in Oxford and also a clinician scientist at the Oxford Vaccine Group.
Andrew Pollard talks to Professor Ramasamy about her hospital work at the John Radcliffe Hospital as a consultant at the start of the pandemic. She discusses as a researcher the alerts she received of a new virus and as a consultant the early stages of preparing the hospital for the influx of COVID-19 patients and being on the ward for the first arrivals of patients. She talks very movingly about the first few months of working with extremely sick patients in intensive work and the increasing surge of unwell patients on the ward. She reflects on this difficult period and how she personally coped with the intense work pressure and also how she and medical colleagues dealt with the stress and the need to protect their families from the spread of the virus. They also reflect on the later waves of COVID-19 in December 2020 after the initial lockdown that again meant hospitals reached capacity with sick patients and how the knowledge of new treatments from research such as the Recovery trials and the vaccine programme affected patient outcomes.
They start the conversation by discussing her early childhood interest in medicine and how that led to her long distinguished research career in vaccines and infectious diseases.
Professor Maheshi Ramasamy is a consultant physician at the John Radcliffe Hospital in Oxford and also a clinician scientist at the Oxford Vaccine Group. Mahesh is a fellow at Magdalen College, Oxford, and Deputy Director of graduate medicine at Oxford University.