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Prize honours Occupational Health pioneer

23 February 2012

Prize honours Occupational health pioneer webDr Carly Atkinson was presented her award by Mrs Eithne D’Auria. Those present included Dr Olivia Carlton, President of the Faculty of Occupational Medicine (London), Dr Martin Hogan, Dean of the Faculty of Occupational Medicine, (Ireland), Professor Ken Addley, Director NICS Occupational Health Service, Professor Sir Mansel Aylward, Director of the Centre for Psychosocial & Disability Research Cardiff University and Professor Philip Routledge, Head of Pharmacology, Professor Colin Dayan, Director Institute of Molecular & Experimental Medicine.

The work of a University leader in Occupational Health who established one of the UK’s first web-based MSc programmes for health professionals has been remembered with the award of a major new prize bearing his name.

The Denis D’Auria Prize in Occupational Health is a new £250 prize awarded annually to the student submitting the best dissertation to Cardiff University’s MSc in Occupational Health (Policy and Practice) course, a programme which he did so much to establish.

The inaugural Denis D’Auria prize was awarded to Dr Carly Atkinson for her dissertation The Role of Occupational Health in the Management Of Bullying and Harassment in the Workplace: An Evidence Based Literature Review.

The dissertation demonstrated the importance of bullying and harassment in the workplace, but also the lack of evidence as to how best to deal with the problem.

Professor Philip Routledge, Head of the Department of Pharmacology, Therapeutics and Toxicology in the School of Medicine, said: "Denis D’Auria was Senior Lecturer in Occupational Medicine, with a special interest in Occupational Toxicology from 1st September 2003 to 30th June 2009. Sadly he died in 2010.

"In his academic role in Cardiff he set about introducing important areas of occupational medicine into the undergraduate medical curriculum including a popular student selected component and in his clinical role he provided occupational health services at University Hospital Llandough and led an occupational and industrial toxicology outpatient referral service there.

"But it is perhaps his work in establishing the University’s first MSc in Occupational Health (Policy and Practice) that he will be best remembered. He designed the course, wrote the learning materials, obtained approval for, and launched an innovative web-based MSc in Occupational Health (Policy and Practice).

"It’s a course that continues to attract healthcare professionals to study on-line from around the world."

Dr Denis D’Auria was born in London to Italian parents, and trained in medicine in Trinity College Dublin, qualifying MB BCh, and BAO in 1970. During his training, he obtained honours in toxicology.

He also obtained an MD in 1976 from Trinity. In 1974 he became a Medical Officer for the European Commission and Head of Laboratories at the Joint Research Centre of Euratom, Ispra, in northern Italy, where he first gained experience in nuclear safety. During that time, he led an emergency team to the earthquake zone in Udine.

In 1977 he was appointed to a post within the UK Atomic Energy Authority at Harwell, where he obtained further experience and mastery of nuclear safety and an even greater understanding of radiation and health.

He was also in demand as an examiner, and he served as senior examiner for both the Associate and Diploma levels of the Faculty of Occupational Medicine.

In 2002 he was made a Fellow of the Faculty of Occupational Medicine in the Royal College of Physicians of Ireland and five years later he was appointed to the post of Academic Registrar. He immediately reviewed, restructured and in the process, revitalised the examination system for the Faculty in Ireland.

In recognition of his contribution there, the Faculty have offered to provide half the cost of this annual prize.

Related links

School of Medicine