Owen Epstein qualified from the University of Witwatersrand, Johannesburg and is Professor of Gastroenterology at the Royal Free London NHS Foundation Trust.
On completing his internship, he settled in the UK, specialising in internal medicine, hepatology and gastroenterology. He was awarded a fellowship to train in Professor Dame Sheila Sherlock’s liver unit and a period of dedicated research was followed by a lectureship and an NHS consultant appointment at the Royal Free London.
His clinical career has focussed on front-line clinical work, undergraduate and postgraduate teaching and clinical research. He is the senior author of the textbook “Clinical Examination”, has published over 100 peer reviewed research papers, has lectured widely and has chaired both the clinical department of gastroenterology and the endoscopy unit at the Royal Free.
Against the background of all the technological, social and economic changes of the past decade, Professor Epstein has relentlessly sought innovations designed to improve the quality of the patient journey. He conceived of and created the “Map of Medicine” , the iConsult project, the Royal Free Endoscopy and Laparoscopy Simulation Centre and, in 2005, established the Royal Free Video Capsule Unit, which is now one of the most active units in Europe.
Professor Epstein recognises the value of video-consulting and along with the emergence of minimally invasive imaging techniques, considers the present to be a rare moment in time to re-calibrate and improve the quality of the healthcare journey of patients with digestive disorders.
The IMIGe is one of the world’s first gastroenterology units to aggregate minimally invasive new technologies designed to solve clinical problems and offer a gentler healthcare experience.
Together with Tim Rayne, Professor Epstein has developed the project in partnership with the innovative private patient unit at the Royal Free, with the intention of the IMIGe becoming the beacon site and exemplar of modern patient centred practice and training which could be adopted throughout the healthcare sector.