Professor YK Seedat, an Emeritus Professor in the School of Clinical Medicine, is the first recipient from Africa to receive the 2013 Pioneer award for Africa, from the International Society of Nephrology (ISN). 

The recipient of two South African Medical Association (SAMA) awards and several national and international awards, Seedat continues to make outstanding contributions in the field of medicine.

The ISN award was recently established to recognise outstanding and sustained contributions to the establishment and/or development of nephrology in the various emerging regions of the world. Nominations were sought from the ISN Global Outreach Regional Committees; and one individual from each region was selected. 

ISN President, Dr John Feehally said: 'Dr Seedat, your selection for this honour by the society reflects our recognition of your multiple roles in the advancement of medicine and medical education in South Africa but particularly for your pioneering efforts in difficult times to insure that renal replacement therapy in your country was available to all of its citizens regardless of their race or the color of their skin. You have set a standard that exemplifies the importance of diversity in the ISN mission and brought renal care in your country to an entirely new level’.

Seedat began his academic undergraduate career in Dublin in 1950. From 1957-1958, he served his internship in Medicine and Surgery in Jervis Street Hospital (Dublin, Ireland). Seedat also served as Academic Registrar of the Royal Infirmary, Manchester, England from 1967 to 1968. 

He then held various positions at King Edward VIII Hospital from 1958 to 1978. In the period between 1978 to 1994, Seedat was Professor and Head of Medicine at the former University of Natal Medical School. From 1995 to 1999 he worked as Professor of Medicine (Research). In the year 2000, Seedat was awarded Honorary Research Associate and Emeritus Professor of Medicine by the University of KwaZulu-Natal.

Prestigious awards Seedat has received include the State President Order For Meritorious Service 1990; Doctor of Philosophy (honoris causa) University of Durban-Westville 1991; Doctor of Medicine (honoris causa) University of Free State 2004, Honorary Fellowship, College of Medicine of South Africa, 1998; Silver Award for Research and Teaching, Medical Association of South Africa, 1994; Citation Award Natal Kidney Association, 1995; Officer of the Order of St John of Jerusalem, May 1995. Illuminated citation Golden Jubilee Award from the Colleges of Medicine of South Africa, 2005 as well as a Life Achievement Award from the International Forum for Hypertension in Africa (IFHA), December 2005.

His medical research is mainly on hypertension and renal medicine. He has published 362 papers in medical journals and 38 chapters in books.  He has also presented 357 papers at 127 international and 230 national congresses and societies. Seedat is a member of various societies and organisations where he has held leadership positions.

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