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The Portland hospital

Resident Anaesthetists

All of The Portland’s consultant anaesthetists work in the NHS and have a special interest in obstetric anaesthesia and are therefore expert in obstetric anaesthesia and analgesia. The consultant anaesthetists also manage the care in our High Dependency Unit.

Please see below for more information about our consultant anaesthetists. If you have any questions about anaesthetic services at The Portland Hospital, please contact the joint leads for the service Dr Cleave Gass or Dr Nuala Lucas at

Dr Cleave Gass image
Dr Cleave Gass Consultant Anaesthetist

Dr Cleave Gass is a Consultant Anaesthetist at St George’s University Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust with a special interest in obstetric anaesthesia. He qualified from the University of Cape Town and trained for postgraduate qualifications in London. Dr Gass is at present the Head of the London Academy of Anaesthesia, overseeing training in anaesthesia across London. He previously was an Associate Medical Director and Director of Medical Education at St George's Hospital. Dr Gass is an Educational Monitoring Associate for the GMC and an Assessor for the National Clinical Advisory Service.

Dr Gass holds a Master’s Degree in Medical Law and Ethics from the University of Glasgow, his published work includes book chapters on consent in labour and the Obstetric Analgesia and Anaesthesia chapters in the Oxford Handbook of Obstetrics and Gynaecology.

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Dr Nuala Lucas Consultant Anaesthetist

Dr Nuala Lucas is a Consultant Anaesthetist at Northwick Park Hospital in Harrow, Middlesex. She is the Honorary Secretary Elect of the Obstetric Anaesthetists’ Association and chairs the Education Sub-committee.

She was the obstetric anaesthetic representative for the NICE Caesarean Section Guideline update published in 2011. She was a member of the joint Obstetric Anaesthetists’ Association/Association of Anaesthetists of Great Britain and Ireland Working Party for Guidelines for Obstetric Anaesthesia Services published in 2013.

Dr Lucas co-authored the Handbook of Obstetric High Dependency Care and serves on the editorial board of the International Journal of Obstetric Anesthesia.

Dr Mark Esler image
Dr Mark Esler Consultant Anaesthetist

Dr Mark Esler is a Consultant Anaesthetist at Queen Charlottes’ and Chelsea Hospital and Hammersmith Hospital, part of Imperial College Healthcare NHS Trust. He qualified from the University of Cambridge and The Royal London Hospital in 1993. He trained in anaesthesia in London, and completed his clinical and research fellowship in obstetric anaesthesia in Vancouver, Canada. He returned to London and has been a consultant with a special interest in obstetric anaesthesia and anaesthesia for gynaecology and gynae-oncology since 2003. He regularly delivers lectures to consultants on obstetric anaesthesia through the Obstetric Anaesthetists’ Association.

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Dr Paul Howell Consultant Anaesthetist

Dr Paul Howell is Consultant Anaesthetist at the Royal London and Homerton Hospitals, London, and has a special interest obstetric anaesthesia. He was the  President of the Obstetric Anaesthetists’ Association (OAA) between 2008 and 2011, has a long-standing commitment to anaesthesia in resource-poor countries, and has been Chairman of the Obstetric Committee of the World Federation of Societies of Anaesthesiologists (WFSA) since 2008. He is an Anaesthetic Assessor for the MBRRACE-UK national Maternal Death Enquiry and was a medical panellist on the GMC’s Fitness to Practise Panels between 2006 and 2014.

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Dr David Wynne Lloyd Davies Consultant Anaesthetist

Dr Wynne Davies qualified in Medicine from the Welsh National School of Medicine in Cardiff in 1980. Dr Davies trained in anaesthesia in London, and is a Consultant Anaesthetist at UCL Hospitals NHS trust (formerly The Middlesex Hospital), in Central London since 1991. Dr Davies was an examiner for the Royal College of Anaesthetists from 1999 to 2009, and has held a number of administrative posts within the department of anaesthesia such as Royal College tutor and departmental chairman at The Middlesex Hospital. Dr Davies is currently an examiner for UCL medical school.

Dr Wynne Davies provides anaesthesia for many different types of surgical specialties, and has been providing anaesthesia for Obstetrics for more than 30 years.

Dr Nicholas Parry image
Dr Nicholas Parry Consultant Anaesthetist

Dr Nicholas Parry is a consultant obstetric anaesthetist at King's College Hospital, London, and at the Portland Hospital. He qualified from the University of Manchester and has been a consultant since 2000. 

Dr Ben Fitzwilliams image
Dr Ben Fitzwilliams Consultant Anaesthetist

Dr Ben Fitzwilliams is a consultant anaesthetist at Guy’s and St Thomas’ NHS Foundation Trust, and has a specialist interest in obstetric anaesthesia.  He is the lead obstetric anaesthetist for the Trust.  He qualified from Guy’s and St Thomas’ hospitals in 1996 with distinctions in Obstetrics & Gynaecology and Surgery.  He trained in anaesthesia in London, and spent time as a senior registrar in Perth, Australia before returning to Guy’s and St Thomas’ in 2005 to take up a consultant post.  He has published articles on obstetric anaesthesia and contributed to books on obstetrics.  He has sat on the committee of the Group of Obstetric Anaesthetists in London.

Dr Fitzwilliams also has a specialist interest in paediatric anaesthesia, working in the Evelina London Children’s Hospital.

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Dr Rory Bell Consultant Anaesthetist

Dr Rory Bell qualified in medicine from the Royal Free Hospital School of Medicine in 1989. He has been a consultant anaesthetist at University College London Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust since 2000 and joined the team at The Portland Hospital in 2005. He was the clinical lead for obstetric anaesthesia at UCLH for 10 years and maintains an interest in high risk obstetric anaesthesia.

He has published and lectured on this subject both in the UK and internationally. Dr Bell is currently the chairperson of the Group of Obstetric Anaesthetists in London (GOAL).

Dr Mark Sacks image
Dr Mark Sacks Consultant Anaesthetist

Dr Mark Sacks MBChB, MSc, FRCA is a consultant anaesthetist and has been in practice since 1994. He provides care at The Portland Hospital, other leading private hospitals and has an NHS base at Imperial College Healthcare NHS Trust. He provides anaesthetic services to a range of specialities including obstetrics, gynaecology, paediatrics and orthopaedic surgery.

He has a masters degree in Healthcare Quality and Safety and serves as Clinical Governance Lead for Anaesthesia at his NHS base. Mark is actively involved in research and teaching on aspects of patient safety.

Dr Rehana Iqbal image
Dr Rehana Iqbal Consultant Anaesthetist

Dr Rehana Iqbal is a Consultant Anaesthetist at The Portland Hospital. She qualified from Guy’s and St Thomas’ Hospitals and trained in anaesthesia in Oxford. Dr Iqbal provides anaesthesia for many surgical specialties and has a special interest in obstetric anaesthesia and difficult airway management. She is also a lecturer in medical ethics and law at St George’s University Hospital where she was a member of the Clinical Ethics Committee.

Dr Iqbal’s published work includes chapters on consent in labour, ethicolegal aspects of obstetric anaesthesia and airway management. She organises and teaches on national meetings on airway management, medical ethics and law.

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Dr Chris Sadler Consultant Anaesthetist

Dr Chris Sadler is a Consultant Anaesthetist at Barts Health NHS Trust with over 20 years of experience in Obstetric anaesthesia. His other major interest is Medical Education, and in particular, the use of simulation to promote patient safety. He is Director of Simulation across North Central & North East London.

Dr Sadler has developed & delivers training on Human Factors, such as team working, communication skills, leadership and decision making in obstetrics. He uses high-fidelity manikins to help multi-professional teams manage obstetric emergencies more effectively.

He has a PhD in Physiology, is an examiner for the Fellowship of the Royal College of Anaesthetists and is the Training Programme Director for Anaesthesia in North East London.

Dr Philippa Groves image
Dr Philippa Groves Consultant Anaesthetist

Dr Philippa Groves is a Consultant Anaesthetist at King’s College Hospital, London. She also practises anaesthesia at all the major private hospitals in central London. Dr Groves specialises in anaesthesia for obstetrics and gynaecology but also provides anaesthesia for other types of surgery including urology and general surgery.

Dr Groves qualified in medicine from Guy’s Hospital, London and trained in anaesthesia at St Bartholomew’s and Guy’s & St Thomas’ Hospitals. She also worked at The Beth Israel Hospital, Boston USA for 3 years. She has previously been Lead Obstetric anaesthetist, Head of the Anaesthetic Department and Chair of the Consultants’ Committee at King’s College Hospital.

Dr Chris Elton image
Dr Chris Elton Consultant Anaesthetist

Dr Chris Elton has been a Consultant Obstetric Anaesthetist at the Leicester Royal Infirmary since 1998. He trained at the University of Sheffield and graduated in 1988, his training including posts in Leeds, Cambridge, Sheffield, Newcastle and Leicester. He is a committee member of the Obstetric Anaesthetists Association and is a member of the education subcommittee. He has lectured at educational meetings in the UK and overseas.

His research interests have included walking epidurals and treatment of massive obstetric haemorhage. The majority of his NHS practice is obstetric anaesthesia and analgesia but provides anaesthesia for complex maxillofacial oncology and hepatobiliary surgery. He has been a Royal College of Anaesthetists College tutor.

Dr Sola Makinde image
Dr Sola Makinde Consultant Anaesthetist

Dr Sola Makinde MRCP, FRCA qualified in medicine from the Royal Free Hospital School of Medicine in 1989. She then trained in internal medicine before completing her
anaesthetic training in London.

She has been a consultant anaesthetist at the Whittington Hospital since 2002 and joined the team at The Portland Hospital in 2005. Dr Makinde was the clinical lead for obstetric anaesthesia at The Whittington for 10 years and maintains an interest in high risk obstetric anaesthesia. Other interests include anaesthesia for bariatric and colorectal surgery. She is currently clinical lead for anaesthesia at The Whittington Hospital.

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