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Patrick Doherty
Head of Department, Professor of Cardiovascular Health



Professor Patrick Doherty is Chair of Cardiovascular Health in the Department of Health Sciences and Director of the British Heart Foundation (BHF) National Audit of Cardiac Rehabilitation (NACR). Patrick was former president of the British Association for Cardiovascular Prevention and Rehabilitation (BACPR) and former Chair of the Cardiac Rehabilitation Section of the European Association of Preventive Cardiology (EAPC). He continues to be highly research active in the area of cardiovascular disease prevention and rehabilitation with over 100 peer reviewed journal papers in the last ten years, six co-authored European position papers alongside five British and European clinical guidelines.

In his senior academic leadership roles Professor Doherty is utilising his extensive experience in the assessment of research quality to inform Research Excellence Framework (REF) and department wide research grant submissions. In his role as Chair of the Research Committee and departmental lead for research (January 2014 to date) the department has substantially increased annual research income to over £9 million in 2018/19.

Patrick’s commitment to cardiovascular disease prevention and rehabilitation led to his appointment as NHS Clinical Lead for Cardiac Rehabilitation where he supported service innovation in the NHS and led the development of an evidence-based clinical pathway (Department of Health Cardiac Rehabilitation Commissioning Pack) which is presently being used in the UK. His research is influencing clinical practice through improvements in uptake and the quality of cardiovascular prevention and rehabilitation services. Patrick has developed a chair based exercise programme that formed an integral part of a successful NIHR funded programme grant (REACH-HF) published in 2018. Patrick is part of three separate five year NIHR programme grants investigating comprehensive rehab and exercise interventions for patients with (1) cardiovascular disease (2) cancer and (3) mental health conditions.

Patrick's research and academic supervision has supported 15 PhD students (10 international) to success with many continuing into post-doctoral collaborative research. He continues to supervise national and international research students in the area of cardiovascular health, physical activity improvement, exercise prescription and patient self-management interventions.



Patrick's research interests are in cardiac rehabilitation, cardiovascular disease prevention and exercise.


  • Saddiqi N; Hewitt C; Shiers D; Kellar I; Boehnke J; Taylor J; Watson J; Osborn D; Doherty P; Coventry P; Ajjan R; Holt R; Alderson S; Ali S; Gilbody S; Long S; Parrott S. Developing and evaluating a diabetes self-management intervention for people with severe mental illness: The DIAMONDS programme - NIHR Programme Grant 2018-2023. Awarded: £2,800,000
  • Doherty P. Lead for a British Heart Foundation (BHF) Research Grant (R18748NACR) 2017-2019: Transforming the delivery of and outcomes from CR services for the benefit of patients with CVD. (£399,548)
  • Strategic Initiative Funded (SIF) Project grant (A0136211): Led by Doherty P in collaboration with Obsidian Health LTD. Online information technologies to improve uptake to rehab services (£25,000)
  • British Heart Foundation (BHF) Research Grant, March 2015 for two years: a new approach to national audit reporting and registry based research for cardiac rehabilitation services in the UK (£453,000).
  • External Engagement Award to help drive research impact. University of York (Competitive award) to Professor Doherty August 2014 (£24,842).
  • Janssen Healthcare Innovation award to help model innovative approaches to observatory data analysis and presentation using the NACR (£70,125). 2014-2016.
  • The Cardiac Rehabilitation Outcome Study (CROS). Bernhard Rauch, Patrick Doherty, Jean-Paul Schmid, Heinz Völler, Massimo Piepoli, Costas Davos, Katrin Jensen, Daniel Saure, Maria-Inti Metzendorf. The prognostic effect of cardiac rehabilitation in the era of acute revascularization and statin therapy: a systematic review and meta-analysis of randomized and non-randomized studies. PROSPERO 2014:CRD42014007084
  • Prof Doherty is a co-investigator REACH-HF research team. REACH-HF is an independent research programme funded by the National Institute for Health Research (NIHR) under its Programme Grants for Applied Research scheme (Reference Number RP-PG-1210-12004). The REACH-HF research team is led by Dr Hayes Dalal, from the Royal Cornwall Hospital, and Professor Rod Taylor, from the University of Exeter Medical School, and aims to develop a home-based self management programme for patients with heart failure. Five year programme grant of £1,995,386. Programme started in December 2012.  
  • Co-researcher and PhD supervisor on the CopenHeart project a collaboration with the University of Copenhagen.
  • Post-doctoral research (2013) with former PhD student now based in Kuala Lumpur (Malaysia).  Chair based exercise home programme evaluation with Dr Nor Afifi Razaob, from the Faculty of Health Sciences, National University of Malaysia.
  • University of Heidelberg PhD supervision with co-supervisor Dr Geraldine Rauch investigating mortality trends in cardiology and after rehabilitation.

Research group(s)

Available PhD research projects

Patrick would welcome PhD projects on observational research using large databases. His group hosts the largest cardiovascular prevention and rehabilitation database in Europe and would welcome interest from PhD students who wish to become part of our established research team which has over twelve successful PhD completions. The aim of this project is to identify top performing rehab programmes delivered in routine practice and develop meaningful ways of presenting patient outcomes at local hospital level. Patrick would also be interested in supervising PhDs in the following areas: Cardiovascular disease prevention and rehabilitation; patient self-management approaches in chronic disease.

This research group supports a range of methods including RCTs, systematic reviews and observational research using large databases. 

There is no direct funding for PhD students as part of this project but the team will commit time and expertise to support the candidate to completion of their PhD.


Present postgraduate researchers/students

  • Serdar Sever: Determinants of cardiac rehabilitation utilisation and outcome in patients with depression
  • Jenny Sumner: Exploring the delivery of rehabilitation services and its impact on the patient experience and clinical outcomes. Are clinical outcomes determined by the timing of cardiac rehabilitation?
  • Jassas Alotaibi: The development and evaluation of a physical activity measure in cardiac rehabilitation.
  • Ahmad Salman: Evaluation of cardiac rehabilitation programme performance.
  • Gill Bromby: Feasibility of a chair based exercise approach in the elderly heart failure population.





Full publications list

External activities


Editorial duties

  • Journal Reviewer for Physiotherapy Journal, Clinical rehabilitation,  British Journal of Cardiology, Journal of Science and Medicine in Sport, British Journal of Cardiac Nursing, European Heart Journal, European Journal of Preventive Cardiology
  • Grant reviewer for Heart Care UK, British Heart foundation, British Association for Cardiac Rehabilitation research awards, Association of Chartered Physiotherapists in Cardiac Rehabilitation, Alberta Heritage Foundation for Medical Research, Canada, Health Research Board, Ireland

Invited talks and conferences

  • BACPR National Conference. The impact of multi-morbidity on patient outcomes. Oct 2019.
  • EuroPrevent Conference 2018. European Association of Preventive Cardiology (EAPC). Do clinicians prescribe exercise similarly in patients with cardiovascular disease? Findings from the EAPC EXPERT working group survey April 2018.
  • Cardiac rehabilitation and exercise. Cardiology Review Course: Collaboration between the Mayo Clinic and the Royal College of Physicians, London, March 2018.
  • Royal College of Anaesthetists. Cardiac rehabilitation: learning lessons from established models. Edinburgh, March 2017.
  • Congress GICR-IACPR. Italian Association of Cardiovascular Prevention and Rehabilitation. Exercise as a core component of cardiac rehabilitation: what have we learned from recent trials? Genoa. Oct 2016.
  • EuroPrevent Congress. European Association for Cardiovascular Prevention and Rehabilitation (EACPR). Cardiac rehabilitation works: Evidence in the modern era. Istanbul May 2016.
  • Portuguese Congress of Cardiology 2016 “Improve the quality of Cardiac Rehabilitation in Portugal: The English Example” April 2016.
  • Evidence base for cardiac rehabilitation and exercise. Cardiology Review Course: Collaboration between the Mayo Clinic and the Royal College of Physicians, London, March 2016.
  • Preventive Cardiology, Sports Cardiology & Exercised Based Rehabilitation-From set up to new frontiers. What have we learned from the RAMIT Trial? Nov 2015. Bern, Switzerland.
  • BACPR Annual Conference, Tomorrow’s World in Cardiovascular Prevention and Rehabilitation, October 2015, Manchester;
    • J Fell, V Dale, P Doherty. Can the extent of patient outcome be determined by the timing of cr?
    • A S Harrison, P Doherty, V Dale. The relationship between volume and outcomes using data from the National Audit of Cardiac Rehabilitation.
  • BACPR Annual Conference. Doherty P. In pursuit of effect routine practice: the new reporting approach through national audit of cardiac rehabilitation; Oct 2014. Northern Ireland.
  • Danish National Cardiology Conference: UK Cardiac Rehabilitation Audit: Rationale, process and outcomes. Nyborg, Denmark. May 2014.


Patrick Doherty

Contact details

Professor Patrick Doherty
Professor of Cardiovascular Health and Head of Department

Tel: 01904 32(1324) for Head of Dept enquires. 01904 32(1741) for Research issues.