Our history

From our beginnings in 1979 as regional group of the Wessex Rehabilitation Association, we've been working to solve skin and wound challenges for more than 40 years.

Our history in brief…

The Society of Tissue Viability was the UK’s first multidisciplinary wound prevention and healing society, set up over 40 years ago. The Society was formed in 1979 as the Wessex Tissue Viability Group, a regional group of the Wessex Rehabilitation Association.

In 1981 it became a national society under the name Tissue Viability Society (TVS) and went on to gain charitable status in 1996. In 2022 the Society changed its working name to become the Society of Tissue Viability.

Chairs and Trustees from the early years

Many well-know people in the world of wound care have served as Trustees and Chairs of the Society. One of the first was Dr James Campbell Robertson who was Chairman and Senior Secretary of the Tissue Viability Society and Editor of its Journal, Care – Science and Practice (now Journal of Tissue Viability) from 1979 to 1990.

In the early days, the Society had both a Chair and a President both serving two-year terms – the process being that the Chair served for two years then became President for a further two years. That process mirrors the Society’s current arrangement, where-by our Vice Chair takes on the role of Chair for two years, after which they serve for a final year as Vice Chair to the incoming Chair.

Dr Robertson really was the driving force behind the early years of the Society and in the 1980s and early 1990s he worked alongside such Chair/Presidents as Norman Exton-Smith, Michael Hall, Tony Barton, Rosemary Crow, John Silver, Joe Barbenel and Michael Clark. In the 1990s the Senior Secretary was John Gisby assisted by Dawn Roberts.

Recent Chairs of the Society of Tissue Viability

Professor Carol Dealey, Senior Research Fellow at University Hospital Birmingham (retired)

Maureen Benbow, Independent Nursing Consultant

Professor Jane Nixon, MBE, Director Leeds Institute Health Sciences

Alison Hopkins, MBE, Chief Executive Accelerate CIC

Tina Chambers, Independent Wound Care Consultant

Heidi Sandoz, Independent Wound Care Consultant

Dr Ray Samuriwo, Associate Professor at University of Bradford

Linda Primmer, Community Tissue Viability Nurse Specialist NHS Lothian

Dr Jeannie Donnelly, Lead Nurse Tissue Viability, Belfast Health & Social Care Trust, Honorary Senior Lecturer, School of Nursing, Queens University Belfast

Our Journal

The Society’s journal went through several names and formats in the 1980s, eventually becoming the Journal of Tissue Viability (JTV) in 1991. After Dr Robertson, editors have included Martin Ferguson-Pell, Peter Shakespeare, Krzys Gebhardt and Michael Clark.

The current editor of the Journal is Professor Dan Bader, Emeritus Professor University of Southampton.