Helen Gillies Prize in Autoimmune Disease

Helen Gillies Prize in Autoimmune Disease

Students at Hull York Medical School and the University of Hull were invited to take part in a new student prize in Autoimmune Disease kindly sponsored by the Gillies family.

Amy SzumanHelen Gillies, class of 2000, completed a joint BA in French and Business Studies at the University of Hull. In 1994, aged 16, she was diagnosed with lupus. Helen struggled with the disease during her time at the University, but still graduated with a 2.1 degree despite being admitted to hospital twice during her studies.  Following University Helen went on to work for an international forklift truck company, travelling the world and living life to the full.  In 2006, after contracting leukaemia, Helen sadly passed away aged just 27.  Helen’s family generously financed the student prize to the University and the Medical School, in order that Helen’s fellow students may learn more about the disease that affected Helen, and so her name may spread awareness and understanding about lupus and autoimmunity.  The Gillies family are keen to support the efforts of the students in any work that may assist other people in future, who may sadly find themselves in the same situation as Helen.

The prize consisted of a certificate and a cheque for £300. The Students selected a particular autoimmune disease of interest that they had encountered in clinical practice and addressed the essay title “How to address the challenges and maximise patient outcomes in the assessment and management of autoimmune disease”.

The prize was won by Amy Szuman, pictured here receiving her prize from Helen’s father David. You can read Amy’s essay, “Churg-Strauss – Challenges in Assessment and Management” in full if you CLICK HERE.


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