Jim Down is a consultant in critical care and anaesthesia at University College London Hospitals. Appointed in 2005, he was Lead for Critical Care between 2007 and 2009, then divisional clinical director between 2009 and 2012. He chairs the ICU consultants’ group, the department of anaesthesia weekly scientific meetings, and the UCHL Trust guideline committee.
During the covid-19 pandemic, he has been on a full-time, full-shift clinical rota in the UCH Intensive Care Unit, and, during that time, was appointed Trust Lead for Ethics. He also reviewed the London Nightingale Hospital as part of the Care Quality Commission. In April 2020 he featured in two highly influential BBC news items reporting on the impact covid-19 was having on London hospitals, and in May 2020 was the subject of a New Statesman long read – ‘The Peak: Inside the mind of Jim Down’. His first book, Covid ICU, is an account of his experience treating covid-19 patients inside the UCH Intensive Care Unit as the pandemic took hold, and will be published by Viking in 2021.
He lives with his family in London.