Skip to content

Pioneering academic and Nurse Consultant named in New Years Honour's list


A dedicated Bradford Nurse Consultant has been honoured in the 2016 Queen's New Year's Honours for her pioneering work in wound care.

Kathryn Vowden, part-time lecturer at the University of Bradford and Nurse Consultant for Acute and Chronic Wound Care with Bradford Teaching Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust, has been awarded the British Empire Medal (BEM) for services to the advancement of wound management for patients (regional, national and international) suffering with chronic wounds.

Kathryn has held the post as Nurse Consultant since 2002, and during this time has been instrumental in running the integrated wound care service, which incorporates all aspects of the management of complex wounds and developing and leading the Wound Healing Unit.

Qualifying in nursing in Leeds in 1976, it was while working as a ward sister that Kathryn developed an interest in nursing education and research, an interest she decided to pursue when moving to Bradford in 1990.

In 1991, she took up the post of Research Sister in Vascular Surgery where she developed her on-going interest in wound care and wound healing research, taking up the post of Clinical Nurse Specialist in Wound Care in 1993, working at both the Trust and the University of Bradford.

She is actively involved in practical wound care and is a tireless campaigner for the advancement of high quality patient care. She is also actively involved in a number of wound care research programs with a special interest in service development innovation, leg ulcer management and advanced wound care therapy, and the subsequent implementation of the research into clinical practice for the benefit of patients.

In addition, Kathryn works at the University of Bradford in the Faculty of Health Studies where she is module leader and has established wound care, leg ulcer and tissue viability-related courses, as well as developing a stand-alone Masters module, which is attended by health care professionals nationwide.

She has also developed a nationally-renowned Wound Healing Unit, and working with colleagues, has established a multidisciplinary diabetic foot management service. She has co-authored educational, review and research articles with leading international medical and nursing experts in both the European Wound Management Association and the World Union of Wound Healing Societies. She is frequently invited to speak at regional, national and international meetings on key areas of patient care including complex wound care, diabetic foot ulceration and pressure ulcer prevention. Her clinical and research activities have resulted in over 100 published articles.

She has recently supported the role of the National Institute of Health Service Research (NIHR) Health Technology Co-operative for Wound Prevention and Treatment (WoundTecHTC), which is based in Bradford.

Kathryn is the recipient of a number of awards including in 2001, the British Journal of Nursing Clinical Practice Award and two lifetime achievement nursing awards.

She was nominated for the New Year’s Honour by a former colleague, Victoria Warner, who said: "Kathryn is empathetic to patients and always takes time to listen to their needs and worries. Throughout her nursing career she has placed the patient, patient safety and the delivery of patient-focused care at the forefront of her practice. She has engendered this passion in her team and her students.

"She has excelled in maintaining very high standards in her professional work, often beyond the call of duty – staying late to see patients or speak to students; simple things that show her unstinting compassion and selflessness. She is truly a role model for others.”

Kathryn said: "Wound care is a fundamental part of nursing and an area of specialisation that is often undervalued. I have been privileged to lead a team of dedicated nurses who have worked as part of a wider multidisciplinary team including medical staff and podiatrists. Together we have been able to provide the patients of Bradford and the surrounding districts with patient-focussed care, responding to the need of each individual.

"I am honoured to receive this prestigious award which reflects not only my work but the work of the whole wound care team at both BRI and the University of Bradford."

Trust Chief Executive, Prof Clive Kay said: "I am delighted that Kathryn has been recognised by the Queen for her unstinting service to Bradford Teaching Hospitals and our patients.

"Her passion and vision for patients with chronic wounds is tireless, and she is to be commended for always striving to provide them with the best, cutting edge treatments."


For further media information, please contact Virginia Mason (01274 382665) or Jason Joy (01274 364022)

Email: or

Back to news from 2016