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Prof Sandy Jack

MSc, PhD

Professor of Prehabilitation Medicine and Honorary Consultant Clinician Scientist

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Sandy Jack has over 20 years’ experience in leading and delivering healthcare services across the public sectors, including community settings in the UK. She is Co-Director of Fit-4-Consortium and Director of Centre for Human Integrative Physiology (NIHR Research Facility). 

She has over 15 years’ experience in prehabilitation medicine and considered a national/international leader in this field. She was the first to show that cancer treatments decreased physical fitness, leading to poor outcomes and high –intensity exercise training reversed/ameliorated the decline and improved tumour regression outcomes. 

She has a global perspective of the challenges and works with international partners to address these. She is a Board member on numerous Societies. She is CI on a number of trials, including the NHSE&I Sustainability and Transformation Partnership Cancer Transformation funded multi-centre Wessex Fit-Cancer Surgery Trial-WesFit ( 

She has co-authored 28 publications and is joint investigator on over £4.3 million in research grants. We have been awarded 15 prizes including the HSJ Cancer Care Initiative of the Year award for WesFit. She is on the Personalised Care Programme Board for NHSE&I on behalf of Wessex Cancer Alliance. Key outputs include over £8M research funding, research capacity building, ad strategy development, including value–based commissioning and workforce development.

Landmark publications:

1. MA West, A Bates, C Grimmett, J Varkonyi-Sepp, S, Leggett, DZH Levett, M Hayes, MPW Grocott and S Jack. The Wessex Fit-4-Cancer Surgery Trial (WesFit): a   protocol for a factorial-design, pragmatic randomised-controlled trial   investigating the effects of a multi-modal prehabilitation programme in   patients undergoing elective major intra–cavity cancer surgery F1000 2021 (In press

2.   Grimmett, C, Bates, A, West, M, Leggett, S, Varkonyi-Sepp, J, Campbell, A,   Davis, J, Wootton, S, Shaw, C, Barlow, R, Ashcroft, J, Scott, A, Moyses, H,   Hawkins, L, Levett, DZH, Williams, F, Grocott, MPW & Jack, S. SafeFit   Trial: Virtual clinics to deliver a multimodal intervention to improve   psychological and physical wellbeing in people with cancer. Protocol of a   COVID-19 targeted non- randomised phase III trial. BMJ Open 2021;11:e048175.   doi:10.1136/bmjopen-2020-048175.

3.   Lisa Loughney and Malcolm A West, Helen Moyses, Andrew Bates, Graham J Kemp,   Lesley Hawkins, Judit Varkonyi-Sepp, Shaunna Burke, Christopher Barben, Peter   M Calverley, Trevor Cox, Daniel Palmer, Monty Mythen, Michael PW Grocott and   Sandy Jack. The effects of neoadjuvant chemoradiotherapy and an in-hospital   exercise training programme on physical fitness and quality of life in   locally advanced rectal cancer patients: a randomised controlled trial (The EMPOWER   Trial) Perioperative Medicine (2021) 10:23

4.   Santa Mina, D, van Rooijen SJ, Minnella EM, Alibhai SMH, Brahmbhatt P, Dalton   SO, Gillis, C, Grocott MPW, Howell D, Randall IM, Sabiston CM, Silver JK,   Slooter G, West M, Jack S, Carli F. Multiphasic Prehabilitation Across the   Cancer Continuum. A Narrative Review and Conceptual Framework. Front Oncol   2021 Jan 11:10:598425. doi: 10 .3389 /fonc .2020 .598425. PMID: 33505914:   PMC7831271.

5.   West MA, Astin R, Mosyses HE, Cave J, White D, Levett DZH, Bates A, Brown G,   Grocott MPW, Jack S. Exercise prehabilitation may lead to augmented tumour   regression following neaadjuvant chemoradiotherapy in locally advanced rectal   cancer. Acta Oncol. 2019 May: 58 (5): 588-595,doi:   10.1080/0284186X.2019.156775. Epub 2019 Feb 6. PMID: 30724668.

6.   Lisa A Loughney Malcolm A West Graham J Kemp Michael PW Grocott Sandy Jack.   Exercise interventions for people undergoing multimodal cancer treatment that   includes surgery. Cochrane Database of Systematic Reviews 2018, Issue 12.   Art. No:CD012280.DOI:10.1002/14651858.CD012280.pub2.

Major grants:

2018-2023: Chief Investigator Professor Sandy Jack on behalf of Wessex Cancer Strategic Network NHS England; Sustainability and Transformation Partnership: Cancer Transformation bid: Wessex Fit - 4-Cancer Surgery: The WesFit Study. A pragmatic factorial design randomised controlled study to assess the efficacy of the implementation of a prehabilitation programmed in patients undergoing elective major intra-cavity Surgery in Wessex. £2,300,000

2018-2023: Chief Investigator Professor Sandy Jack on behalf of Wessex Cancer Strategic Network   NHS England; Sustainability and Transformation Partnership: Cancer Transformation bid: The Recovery Package. £1,300,00

2018-2021: Co-investigator Professor Sandy Jack; NIHR: Health Technology Assessment Grant Effectiveness and cost-effectiveness of INSPIRatory musclE training (IMT) for reducing postoperative pulmonary complications (PPC): a sham-controlled randomised controlled trial. £1,854,557.77

2018-2021: Chief Investigator Professor Sandy Jack, Research Fellow: Dr Tim Wallis, Co-   investigators: Dr Sophie Fletcher and Dr Mark Jones; NIHR Southampton BRC Clinical Research Fellowship Multimodal rehabilitation for patients with interstitial lung disease: a feasibility study to test an innovative disease-specific intervention. £161,155

2020-2022: Chief Investigator Professor Sandy Jack; Macmillan Cancer Support; The National Lottery Community Fund (DCMS) and Wessex Clinical Research Network (ETC) SafeFit Trial: Virtual clinics to deliver a multimodal intervention to improve psychological and physical wellbeing in people with   cancer. Protocol of a COVID-19 targeted non- randomised phase III trial. £917,530

Impact example:

CES Impact Case Statement:

Scientific breakthrough: Our Fit-4-Surgery consortium, were the first to show the harmful effects of systemic cancer therapies on physical fitness (including mitochondrial function) and quality of life (QoL) before surgery, with consequent effects on perioperative outcome across diverse tumour types. We were the first to publish evidence, showing rescue with exercise prehabilitation (improvements in fitness, QoL and tumour regression) in humans.

Interdisciplinary: We have developed a world-class team that are internationally recognised as leaders in the fields of prehabilitation and integrative physiology. Our interdisciplinary team brings together clinical academics from several UoS faculties (medicine, health sciences, ECS) partnered with pharmaceutical and leisure industries, diagnostic clinical imaging experts and computer scientists to enable the rapid translation of our research findings from bench to bedside, through to implementation of clinical services in patients with cancer and respiratory diseases.

Impact: Working with several key organisations regionally (Wessex Cancer Alliance, BRC, ARC & AHSN) nationally (Royal Colleges, various Charities including Macmillan, and national Centre for Perioperative Care) and internationally (iPOETTS-International Prehabilitation and Exercise Testing and Training Society) we have improved patient care and outcomes (reduced toxicities, improved QoL, reduced mortality and morbidity and given a genuine sense of empowerment to patients at a difficult time of their lives) in >2000 patients as well as substantial demonstrable cost savings and quality impact across a number of cancer pathways.

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