Dr Sunita Channa
Mr Luke Cheesbrough
Dr Yen-Fu Chen
Mr Peter Chilton
Rev Barry Clark
Prof Aileen Clarke
Dr Jamie Coleman
Dr Gill Combes
Dr Charlotte Connor
Ms Jennifer Cooper
Dr Carole Cummins
Prof Graeme Currie
- 21 July 2017, Dr Anne-Marie Brennan
Dr Anne-Marie Brennan is the new Head of Programme Delivery for CLAHRC WM, following Nathalie Maillard’s departure for a new role. Anne-Marie has a background in both academic research and research management and has worked clinically as a midwife. Her initial degree was in English Language and Literature from Oxford in 1989; after this she trained as a direct-entry midwife in Winchester, qualifying in 1994. Anne-Marie worked first in Warrington and then at St Mary’s in Manchester. While doing this, she studied for a Psychology degree with the Open University and completed this in 1998. She specialised in diabetes care in pregnancy and worked on a research study in the field. A chance encounter with Professor Francis Creed at Manchester led to her studying for a PhD in the completely different field of psychological medicine. After completing this in 2002, Anne-Marie worked with Professor Gary MacFarlane at the Unit of Chronic Disease Epidemiology on a European-wide study into head and neck cancer. and on a follow-up study on the veterans of the 1991 Gulf War. Anne-Marie then focused on the administrative side of research and spent several years at Manchester as a Research Business Manager in various departments of the Medical School: her last role there was in Primary Care, where she provided the costing for Manchester’s first CLAHRC.
A relocation in 2010 brought Anne-Marie to the University of Warwick where she was the manager for an FP7 project delivering healthcare training to clinical practitioners in Malawi and Tanzania; alongside this, she also worked for the Consortium for Advanced Research Training in Africa (CARTA) for a short time, then moved to the Clinical Trials Unit managing two studies, one metabolic and one orthopaedic. Anne-Marie’s most recent role has been supporting the student discipline processes in the central University office, but she missed the Medical School too much and decided to return.
Anne-Marie plays the flute and is currently working through her exam grades as she never bothered with these at school. She also enjoys Irish music and plays Irish flute and, after several years of lugging round a button accordion for her son, has finally succumbed and is also learning how to play this too.
- 07 July 2017, Ms Sian Williamson
Ms Sian Williamson is a PhD student based within the Division of Health Sciences at Warwick Medical School. Her research is funded by the ESRC-DTC Warwick and Public Health England, through the NHS Breast Screening Programme (NHSBSP). Sian has a BSc in Psychology from the University of Chester, which she followed with a MSc in Health Psychology at the University of Bath.
Sian has an interest in research which applies psychological theories and concepts into the real world, particularly in the area of health. Her MSc thesis focused on the change in policy for the calorie labelling of alcoholic drinks. This included looking at the public’s current knowledge of calories in alcohol, alongside testing prototype designs for calorie labels. Her BSc thesis focused on the impact of mindfulness techniques on the ability to resist chocolate cravings. This research has recently been published in the Journal of Health Psychology [link].
Sian’s interest in applying psychology in health led to her current PhD project, which focuses on how results should be communicated to women receiving results from breast screening. Her research aims to investigate the impact of receiving results over the telephone for women who have a benign biopsy, in order to assess patient anxiety, how well the results are understood and how women themselves might prefer to receive their results. This research will be a multi-centre study, with the results being considered in future NHSBSP policy changes for communicating results.
Sian is supervised by Sian Taylor-Phillips, Rebecca Johnson and Harbinder Sandhu. She also has support from a team of experts from the NHSBSP (Jacquie Jenkins, Olive Kearins and Margaret Casey).
Outside of her PhD, Sian enjoys singing and performing in musical theatre.
- 23 June 2017, Ms Amanda Lambert
Ms Amanda Lambert is a part-time PhD student, funded by CLAHRC West Midlands, in the Institute of Applied Health Research at the University of Birmingham. She is in the second year of her PhD, working with Prof Tom Marshall and Dr Ronan Ryan, which focuses on the association between physical health and severe mental illness (SMI). Amanda’s particular area of interest is in the use of routinely collected electronic health record (EHR) data for research. Her PhD uses primary care data from THIN (The Health Improvement Network) and aims to develop models to predict the risk of poor health outcomes for people with severe mental illness.
Amanda specialises in data analysis and initially studied in the 1980’s, obtaining a BSc (hons) in mathematics from Southampton University followed by an MSc in statistics from the University of Kent at Canterbury. Later, in 2009, Amanda completed her Masters in Public Health at Birmingham University. Her dissertation explored predictors for the uptake of cardiovascular screening in Birmingham.
Alongside her university studies, Amanda’s career has been in the NHS, starting as a statistician and moving into Public Health as an analyst and epidemiologist. She is now Service Manager for the Public Health Intelligence team in Birmingham City Council. Her role involves analysing and interpreting data and evidence on the health needs of the Birmingham population to support commissioning of services. She is also a registered Public Health Practitioner, which required the development of a portfolio of evidence demonstrating a range of Public Health skills and competences.
Outside of work, Amanda enjoys walking the coastal paths of Devon and Cornwall and improvising tasty (and healthy) meals from the ingredients that happen to be lurking in the fridge.
- 09 June 2017, Dr Bronwyn Harris
Dr Bronwyn Harris is a Senior Research Fellow at the University of Warwick, where she is a member of the NIHR CLAHRC WM Theme 4: Chronic disease team. Her current projects are focused on multimorbidity in older adults and digital clinical communication with adolescents. She is also a researcher at the Centre for Health Policy, University of the Witwatersrand, where she has spent the past decade researching access, equity and ways in which healthcare is ‘done’ – between frontline providers and patients/communities, within health management structures, and in response to complex, changing health needs of populations (including tuberculosis, HIV/AIDS, maternal health, and non-communicable disease).
She is particularly interested in exploring how research can support efforts to build accountable and responsive health systems, and loves the transformative possibilities of storytelling. Bronwyn started her research career at the Centre for the Study of Violence and Reconciliation, an NGO based in Johannesburg, where she worked for seven years researching patterns of violence during South Africa’s transition to democracy (with a focus on xenophobia, vigilantism, and trauma). She is continually amazed and humbled by people who ‘show up’, who do brave, wonderful, forgiving things every day. Alongside finding hope in everyday kindness, and redemption in coffee, Bronwyn adores her family, Sigmund Freud, and plastic flamingos.
- 05 May 2017, Mr Richard Grant
Richard Grant is a PPI Advisor for CLAHRC West Midlands, linked to Theme 2, Youth Mental Health.
As a small boy Richard slipped and ended up face down in a local pond in his eagerness to catch newts. He was eventually successful and the newts bred in his home aquarium. So started a long time interest in the natural world that would eventually lead to him teaching biology for a number of years in a multicultural comprehensive school. At one time his teaching lab was more like a zoo and pupils’ interest was captured. Times change and with a more rigid curriculum the ‘zoo approach’ gave way to formalised teaching.
Richard took early retirement from teaching in 1997 and took on full time what had been a secondary interest, local politics. He had been an elected councillor for some years, but in 1997 a new era began with a change in government. He took on the role of Chair of the Education Committee and immersed himself in promoting inclusive education where culture and creativity was centre to the education vision. He learnt a great deal about the many aspects of local government, engaging with and representing, constituents from a range of life experiences. A significant feature of the areas he represented was economic and educational deprivation. Life expectancy for his constituents was significantly lower than more affluent areas in Warwickshire. It was clear to Richard that to make any impact on the health and wellbeing of his constituents, education was a significant key. Increased educational opportunities could lead to improved skills, greater job prospects, increased income and potentially improve health prospects. He devoted a fair amount of his time and energy to influence this agenda.
Political changes come and go. Locally this led to a change in Richard’s role from being a leading member of the administration to an opposition scrutiny role. All good experience! However, some changes are bigger than others and in 2009 the national political scene changed dramatically and he was not re-elected.
After many years gaining skills and experiences teaching and being in local government Richard took the opportunity to use this to best effect as a lay member with a number of medical research projects and with CLAHRC WM.
Getting out into the countryside is a pleasure for Richard and walking in different landscapes has been a feature of his life. In more recent years he has travelled more widely and has taken to enjoying life aboard a cruise ship or two.
First hand experiences can be valuable but not always available, so Richard explores some aspects of life through reading and attends a couple of reading discussion groups. A first-hand experience that Richard does cherish is partaking of real ales and good food in the company of his civil partner.
- 21 April 2017, Dr Abimbola Ayorinde
Dr Abimbola Ayorinde is a Research Fellow at the University of Warwick, working within the Warwick Centre for Applied Health Research & Delivery (W-CAHRD). She graduated with a BSc (Hons) First-class in Applied Physiology and Pharmacology from the University of the West of England in Bristol. In 2010, Abi completed a Master’s degree in Health Services and Public Health Research, graduating with a distinction. She obtained a PhD in Epidemiology from the University of Aberdeen, funded by Medical Research Council. Her PhD project involved designing and conducting a large population-based cross-sectional survey to examine the epidemiology of chronic pelvic pain in women. Before moving to academia, she worked with the NHS Grampian at the NHS Research Scotland Permissions Coordinating Centre, where she facilitated research and development approval process for multi-centre studies involving Scotland. In addition, she worked as a Research Fellow at the University of Aberdeen where she was involved in multiple research projects and was also responsible for managing data access procedures for research based on the Aberdeen Maternity and Neonatal Databank (AMND).
She joined W-CAHRD in March 2017 as a research fellow and her current work involves evaluating publication and related bias in health services and delivery research. Abi has experience in undertaking systematic reviews as well as the design and application of quantitative research methods. Besides health services research, she also has interests in women’s health particularly maternal and perinatal health.
- 07 April 2017, Ms Agnieszka Latuszynska
Ms Agnieszka Latuszynska is a second year doctoral student within Entrepreneurship and Innovation Group at Warwick Business School at the University of Warwick working under the supervision of Professors Eivor Oborn and Patricia Reay. Her research is being developed within a broader umbrella of CLAHRC related research on risk management in healthcare where the theme leader is Professor Graeme Currie (Theme 5, Implementation and Organisation Studies).
The proposed research topic concerns how different professional groups perceive and manage risk. In particular, in a complex organization, like healthcare, there is a multiplicity of risks and there are many stakeholders involved. Consequently, different stakeholders, having their individual conceptualisations of risk, need to cooperate on different aspects of risk. As a result, the way in which risk is being managed will affect stakeholders’ value and stakeholders’ process of contributing value to the organisation. The goal is to develop new insight into how the layering and managing of risk (for example what kind of risk different stakeholder groups are held accountable for and by whom) might affect healthcare services.
Agnieszka after obtaining an MSc degree in Public Health from the Medical University of Warsaw (Poland), spent over 5 years working at the Division of Contract Supervision and Audit of National Health Fund in Warsaw (Polish health care system) being responsible for supervision of contracts with health care providers.
Being also a dietitian (she obtained: MSc in Food Technology and Human Nutrition – Warsaw University of Life Sciences and BSc. in Dietetics – Medical University of Warsaw) she is interested in eating disorders and promoting healthy eating habits. Beside this, she is passionate about swimming, long distance walking and biking trips with her family.
- 24 March 2017, Ms Maartje Kletter
Maartje Kletter is a Research Associate at Warwick Medical School. Last year she completed a research masters in Biomedical Sciences, majoring in Health Technology Assessment, at the Radboud University in the Netherlands. During her studies she gained experience in health research from several internships. She spent some months in Rwanda for a study concerning maternal and sexual and reproductive health, and she was involved in the development of a Citizen Panel concerning reimbursement in Dutch Health Insurance. At the end of her studies she came to Warwick Medical School for a short internship looking at interventions for the prevention of adverse events. Although she enjoyed the various internships, she thought the study programme at her university was a bit old-fashioned, and so became a student representative and was actively engaged in renewal of the medical and biomedical curriculum.
After graduation she worked for a Dutch liability insurance company for hospitals, but returned to the University of Warwick in January 2017 – she is very excited to be back. Currently she is involved in activities for the Warwick Impact Fund, and in the future she hopes to do work on inter-disciplinary research regarding patient safety.
In her spare time Maartje loves to bake, read, and explore the English countryside by foot.
- 10 March 2017, Ms Sian Scogings
Ms Sian Scogings has recently joined the University of Warwick (February 2017) as the Research Project Administrator for the Warwick Centre for Applied Health Research and Delivery (W-CAHRD). Her role is to contribute to the development and success of W-CAHRD by providing effective administrative support to the Director and Centre Manager and assisting with research projects where necessary.
Sian has come to Warwick from a design and marketing agency, where she managed administrative procedures, client communication and studio scheduling.
She graduated from Cardiff University in 2015 with a BSc in Business Management, where she developed particular interests in ethical and international business. She is very excited to be working in the field of global health research. Outside of work Sian enjoys cooking, trying new foods and the occasional trip to the gym.
- 24 February 2017, Mr John Richmond
Mr John Richmond is a PhD Management student based within the Entrepreneurship and Innovation Department at Warwick Business School working with CLAHRC WM Theme 5, Implementation and Organisational Studies. He holds an Honorary Research Fellowship at the Heart of England NHS Foundation Trust.
John is a member of the Canadian College of Health Leaders, and has ten years of administrative experience in public and private healthcare organisations in both Canada and the United States. Most recently he was a consultant for the Horizon Health Network in Atlantic Canada, where he provided risk management leadership and advice for front-line and management stakeholders in an area consisting of ten facilities, including two hospitals, community health centres, addictions, mental health, and extra mural services. Prior health management positions held by John include working in the private sector for Medavie Blue Cross, a health insurer, and Medical Decision Logic (mdlogix), a US based health informatics firm.
His PhD research explores Serious Untoward Incidents (SUI), ‘Never Events’, and the resultant Root Cause Analysis (RCA) investigations, to examine their impact on healthcare professionals. John interviewed 50 healthcare professionals, primarily doctors and nurses, who had recently experienced a SUI and RCA investigation in their department. Following an initial coding of data, early themes centre around professional’s emotional response to SUI and the degree to which they make changes to their professional practice.
- 10 February 2017, Dr Sarah Woolley
Dr Sarah Woolley is a second year PHD student based at Warwick Business School working within CLAHRC WM Theme 5, Implementation and Organisational Studies, with Professor Graeme Currie and Associate Professor Charlotte Croft. Sarah’s research thesis focuses on understanding how NHS executive teams effect strategy in a policy environment of cost reduction and quality improvement. Sarah’s work is currently at an early fieldwork stage. She is using qualitative ethnographic methods to study how executives coordinate, negotiate and organise their work to effect strategic change within the NHS.
Sarah has had a varied career working in a number of roles within the NHS and academia. Sarah initially started her career as a scientist, having obtained a BSc (Manchester) and PhD (Birmingham) in biology and biochemistry. Her first job role was working as a research scientist looking at the role of drug resistance in Chronic Myeloid Leukaemia, and she then trained as a clinical biochemist, providing laboratory services for NHS patients. Sarah later moved into NHS management, progressing to become a Board Director leading on the quality and safety improvement agenda at a busy acute NHS hospital. During her time in the NHS, Sarah developed a number of academic collaborations and became increasingly drawn to returning to academia to better understand organisations and to develop better ways of working for staff and to improve services for patients. This culminated in Sarah recognising her unfulfilled passion for academia and taking the plunge to become a student again in 2015.
Sarah relaxes from her PhD studies by doing yoga, taking care of her bees, and walking with her dog.
- 27 January 2017, Ms Helen Jones
Helen Jones is a PhD student based within the Division of Health Sciences at Warwick Medical School. She is funded by the NIHR CLAHRC West Midlands (Theme 3, Prevention and Detection of Diseases). Helen is a registered Public Health Nutritionist (RNutr) who has worked in various roles in the NHS and local authority. Since obtaining an MSc in Nutrition and Public Health Management from Sheffield Hallam University in 2009, she has worked as an adult weight management advisor, early year’s nutritionist, and type 2 diabetes educator. In her most recent role, prior to starting her PhD, Helen worked as a specialist health improvement practitioner at Wolverhampton city council. She was responsible for coordination of a British Heart Foundation programme for overweight children (2-18yrs). She also developed an early year’s obesity prevention programme and was involved in a healthier takeaways project with environmental health as well as work place health initiatives.
Helen’s interests have led her on to her PhD where her research focuses on the treatment of adolescent obesity. Her research aims to understand what makes an effective weight management programme for adolescents with a view to influencing practice within Coventry. This research includes a systematic review of the qualitative literature. Helen is supervised by Oyinlola Oyebode, Lena Al-Khudairy and G.J. Melendez-Torres.
Outside of research Helen is a keen netball player and currently represents the University of Warwick in their first team.
- 13 January 2017, Mr Luke Cheesbrough
Mr Luke Cheesbrough recently joined the CLAHRC WM as Programme Officer at the University of Warwick, starting in November 2016. His role is to contribute to the development and success of the CLAHRC WM by providing effective administrative support to the Director and Heads of Programme Delivery. Originally from the Cambridge, Luke’s previous role was at Pearson Education Ltd where he worked as a Contracts and Allocations Co-ordinator, working out of their central London office. He graduated from the University of Leeds in 2010 with a BA in History, and remained at Leeds to do his masters in Modern History, which he completed in 2012. Since graduating, Luke has worked in the education sector, having worked for Cambridge Assessment before moving to Pearson. Luke lives in Kenilworth, and is an avid music listener and Manchester United fan.
- 09 December 2016, Dr Rachel Adams
Dr Rachel Adams is the coordinator for the NIHR CLAHRC WM Theme 1, Maternity & Child Health team.
Rachel began her career in healthcare as a student nurse (adult) in 1987. Her first research project was as a newly qualified nurse examining the pros and cons of nurses’ hats. As a result hospital policy was changed and nurses were no longer required to wear hats. Rachel then completed an undergraduate degree in Medical Anthropology at University of Durham’s Stockton Campus as a part-time mature student whilst still nursing in Newcastle upon Tyne. In 2002 Rachel secured her first research post, at the University of Newcastle upon Tyne conducting qualitative analysis of patients’ experiences of COPD exacerbations, and subsequent experiences of GP appraisal. She went on to join the University of Warwick in 2005.
At the University of Warwick, Rachel worked on a number of studies relating to decision-making before securing a PhD stipend at University of Birmingham to conduct a qualitative, linguistic analysis of doctor-patient decision-making within consultations in primary care. Throughout this time Rachel continued to work in the NHS as a bank nurse, and in Birmingham she was able to join the research network’s nurse bank, based at the University. Here she was able to gain experience of working on a range of clinical trials, primarily those relating to smoking cessation. Whilst undertaking her doctoral studies Rachel also became a mother. On completing her doctoral studies Rachel joined the cessation team as a part-time research nurse. Rachel joined CLAHRC WM as this trial came to an end. She continues to work part-time, sharing the role with a newly appointed part-time administrator, Vanessa Rouse. On her term-time days off Rachel takes the opportunity to pursue other academic interests.
Away from academia, Rachel spends much time in her car – on the motorway to North Wales to visit her partner where the family (including the dog) enjoy visiting castles and other monuments, walking and going to the beach. Additionally, she spends time taxiing her daughter to a raft of after school and high adrenaline activities – recent trips have included Legoland, various European waterparks and the largest zip zone in Europe at Zip World in Wales; Alton Towers is next. The family also fly around Europe to visit friends. Rachel is also a member of a local book club, enjoys keep fit, and uses the bike to commute as much as possible. As for sitting still – the thing she most looks forward to is choosing the next jazzy gel polish colour for her nails.
- 25 November 2016, Dr Karen Shaw
Dr Karen Shaw is a Research Fellow at the University of Birmingham working in the CLAHRC WM Theme 1: Maternity and Child Health. She began her career as a Research Psychologist after qualifying with a BSc (Hons) in 1994, PGCert in IT and Research Methods in 1995, and PhD in 2001. However, her passion for improving children’s healthcare was ignited in her late teens when she worked with disabled children in a variety of childcare settings.
Karen has worked at the University of Birmingham since 2000 and has a special interest in transitional care for children with long-term or life-threatening conditions. This includes transitions between services (e.g. from paediatric to adult health services) and transitions along the condition trajectory (e.g. from curative to end of life care). Much of her work therefore focuses on how professionals and families can work together to plan care and develop more responsive services.
Her initial appointment was as the National Programme Co-ordinator for a project to develop and evaluate a programme of transitional care for young people with arthritis. This won the BUPA 2005 Clinical Excellence Award for translating research into clinical practice and was used to support national policy and best practice guidance. Karen subsequently became a Birmingham Research Fellow in Nursing and Physiotherapy where she undertook research to examine generic prognostic indicators in children’s end of life care and developed the Spectrum of Children’s Palliative Care Needs; a prognostic based framework to facilitate the collection of standardised data for use by those involved in the planning, delivery and evaluation of children’s palliative care services. Karen joined CLAHRC WM in 2014 and is currently leading projects to evaluate (i) the Advanced Care Plan for a Child or Young Person, and (ii) Magnolia House, a new facility at Birmingham Children’s Hospital to support families and staff with sharing life-altering information and bereavement care. She is also a co-applicant on a prospective pilot study of home monitoring in adults with cystic fibrosis.
Her research typically uses mixed methods and participatory techniques to facilitate the user-voice to be heard. She has published widely in scientific journals and book chapters, and has developed many data collection tools, outcome measures and educational-resources for patients, carers and professionals. She is also involved in teaching and supervision.
Karen is married with a nine-year old son. Consequently, her spare time is now spent hunting Pokémon, discussing Star Wars, and finding missing Lego pieces!
- 11 November 2016, Ms Joanne Plumb
Ms Joanne Plumb is Head of Research and Development (Operations) at University Hospitals Birmingham NHS Foundation Trust (UHBFT).
After completing her nurse training in Manchester, Jo specialised as an ITU nurse at Harefield Hospital where she developed her career in transplantation and research. Jo joined University Hospital Birmingham in 1991 as a Senior Nurse, and has since held various positions including Senior Trial Co-ordinator, Deputy R&D Manager, Clinical Manager of the NIHR/Wellcome Trust Clinical Research Facility and has successfully completed a Master in Health Research at University of Birmingham. Jo was also instrumental in securing a 12.8m NIHR infrastructure award for the NIHR / Wellcome Trust Clinical Research Facility and is a member of the Senior Management team.
Currently, as Head of R&D Operations, Jo is responsible for the operational management and delivery of research activity in UHB and regularly advises on R&D operations nationally and regionally. She has presented and published at several national and international research meetings on R&D process and research workforce capacity planning leading on the UKCRFN intensity tool and remains a member of the strategic planning team. Jo is also an Executive member of the Birmingham Health Partners, and her role includes senior operational responsibility for developing and driving forward the research strategy of BHP and delivery of Birmingham’s Institute of Translational Medicine (a £24m project with funding support from central UK government).
- 28 October 2016, Ms Maria Livanou
Ms Maria Livanou is a second year PhD student within the Division of Mental Health and Wellbeing at Warwick Medical School, funded by CLAHRC WM. Her research focus is on young offenders (17-19 years old) with ongoing mental health problems in transition across forensic mental health services. The overall aim of this study is to assess the transition processes and policies across all national six medium adolescent secure units in England. This project is using a mixed methods approach:
- A systematic review and meta-analysis on the prevalence of mental health problems in young offenders in detention and other settings.
- A mapping exercise to identify young offenders approaching the transition age boundary moving to adult services within a six-month period and to address processes and outcomes of transition across agencies in terms of policy, practice, and user experience.
- Case-note reviews looking retrospectively at processes and outcomes of transitions to adult services and custody the preceding year.
- Semi-structured interviews to explore health-care providers’, service users’ and their parents’/carers’ (followed-up from mapping exercise) views and experiences of the transition process and infrastructure
Maria obtained a First Class Honours Degree in Forensic Psychology (summa cum laude) from John Jay College of Criminal Justice, City University of New York. She has worked as a Research Assistant for the past four years in several projects, including forensic experimental psychology (deception detection and false confessions), and in clinical psychology (suicidal behaviours in emerging adults). Her research interests are forensic child and adolescent psychiatry, transitions of young people to adult mental health services, mental health problems in this population (self-harm and suicidal behaviour), and young offenders’ mental health and how to build resilience in this group to avoid recidivism. One of Maria’s projects explored the relationship between dysfunctional families, suicidal behaviour, and borderline characteristics in young individuals. She is also interested in social justice research and has been involved in an interdisciplinary project that examined LGBT Youth of Colour and their mental and physical health.
Her research outputs include:
- Livanou M, Furtado V, Singh S. Prevalence and nature of psychiatric disorders among young offenders in custody and community: A meta-analysis. J Eur Psych Assoc. 2016; 33: s570.
- Rampling J, et al. Non-pharmacological interventions for reducing aggression and violence in serious mental illness: a systematic review and narrative synthesis. Eur Psychiatry. 2016; 34: 17-28.
- 14 October 2016, Ms Elaine O’Connell Francischetto
Ms Elaine O’Connell Francischetto is a Research Fellow and Doctoral Researcher in the NIHR CLAHRC-WM Theme 4: Chronic disease team.
Elaine first developed a keen interest in health research whilst completing her undergraduate degree in Health and Exercise Sciences. This interest in research motivated her to apply for an MSc by Research studentship. Elaine was successfully awarded the studentship, which was a mixed method evaluation of an arts intervention that aimed to improve the mental health and wellbeing of primary care patients. She completed the MSc part-time, whilst also working as a self-employed sports coach for local schools and school sports partnerships.
After completing her MSc by Research in early 2011, Elaine worked in full-time research positions first for Public Health England and then the University of Bristol. In these roles she developed strong research skills, particularly in qualitative methods, systematic reviewing and research project management. Elaine has broad research interests and has previously conducted mixed method research in different research areas including: cancer; chlamydia screening; electronic patient reported outcomes; mental health and research methodology.
In November 2014 Elaine became part-time in her role at the University of Bristol, so that she could start her part-time PhD studentship with CLAHRC WM at the University of Birmingham. Her doctoral research includes a meta-review of discharge interventions for older patients leaving hospital and a case study evaluation of a supported integrated discharge service. In February 2016 Elaine moved from the University of Bristol to work part-time as a Research Fellow in the CLAHRC WM Chronic Disease theme. In her Research Fellow role, Elaine is evaluating the use of virtual clinics for liver transplant patients and conducting a scoping review of inappropriate prescribing interventions.
Outside of work Elaine enjoys walking, travelling and learning languages, especially Portuguese. Elaine also has a keen interest in Judo and previously represented Great Britain competing as an under 21 year old in the sport, but now only volunteers her time as a Judo coach for a local Judo Club.
- 30 September 2016, Miss Charlie Fontaine
Miss Charlie Fontaine is a PhD student based in the Mental Health and Wellbeing Division (Health Sciences) at Warwick Medical School. She is funded by the NIHR CLAHRC West Midlands, and works with theme 2, Youth Mental Health. She has a background in Psychology, which includes a BSc (Hons) in Psychology from the University of Kent, where her final year project focused on how displaying different emotions can improve the effectiveness of apologies. After graduation she worked in mental health as a care worker, support worker and mental health recovery worker, before she studied for an MSc in Clinical Aspects of Psychology (Merit) from the University of Reading. Her research there explored what types of people are drawn to pain.
Charlie is just about to start the third year of PhD study; her project is on resilience in adolescent mental health. To explore this, her research focuses on different groups of adolescents and what factors are associated with resilience for these groups. This includes: young adolescents as they transition from primary school to secondary school, older adolescents and their experiences whilst in care, and secondary school pupils from single parent families.
Her other research interests include: mindfulness, mental health interventions, and eating disorders. Outside of work Charlie enjoys playing hockey and learning ballet.
- 16 September 2016, Mr Ryan Irwin
Mr Ryan Irwin is a final year PhD student at the School of Primary Care Clinical Sciences, University of Birmingham, and is funded through the NIHR, working with CLAHRC WM theme 3, Prevention and Detection of Diseases.
Academically, he has previously gained a BSc (hons) in Physiotherapy and an MSc in Healthcare Policy and Management from the University of Birmingham, and a Masters in Public Administration (MPA) from the University of York. His PhD is centred around understanding variation in the clinical quality of primary care, linked to his current research interests around quality measurement, quality improvement, and implementation science in primary care and health systems. As part of this research, clinical indicators relating to cardiovascular disease and diabetes were analysed in general practices in the West Midlands. Practices showing unusually high or low performance across indicators were identified and semi-structured interviews were then conducted with practice staff to explore reasons for variation and practice approaches to quality improvement. A typology of primary care practices was then developed based on practice differences in leadership, culture, care systems, and approaches to quality improvement.
Prior to his PhD Ryan held a range of strategic, operational, and consultancy roles in healthcare management, having started his career through selection to the national NHS General Management Training Scheme. Roles occupied have included supporting development of new models of population-based, integrated care in large health economies of more than 1.2 billion people, to senior management roles as a General Manager, Associate Director and Director working for a number of NHS commissioners and providers. His experience has included leading on the design and development of a primary care-led population-based, out of hospital care model that aimed to manage care and reduce per capita care costs for a population of around 150,000. The model was successful in achieving this aim, whilst improving quality of care as measured through quality, outcome and health care utilisation measures, gaining national recognition through the NHS pioneer programme.
Outside of work, Ryan enjoys going to the gym and eating unhealthy portions of red meat, though usually not at the same time!
- 02 September 2016, Dr Helene Bussy
Dr Helene Bussy is a Research Fellow at Warwick Business School and works for CLAHRC WM on Theme 5, Implementation and Organisational Studies.
She completed her PhD in Organisation Studies in 2015 at the Université Paris-Dauphine (France) and held a visiting position at the London School of Economics in 2013. Her thesis was funded by the Fondation Paris-Dauphine and explored the contestation over pharmaceutical firms by General Practitioners.
Following her PhD, she joined CLAHRC WM Theme 5 and worked in a number of projects including studying the different leadership practices of professionals throughout the implementation of triage systems in midwifery and physiotherapy. Her background in management consulting, allied with social science theories, brings better clarifications on how actors translate new knowledge and why they interpret innovation differently. Her current projects includes conducting interviews with project leaders, running non-participant observations in sites, and analysing qualitative data in depth using grounded theory approach. As well as an interest in technologies and ICT, Helene conducts research focused on legitimacy acquisition, identity transition, and organisational change in healthcare professional organisations following societal collapses and scandals.
For the past five years, she has also organised international academic conferences around organisational topics, including materiality and institutional theories (Organisation Artefact and Practices workshops) and space (Research Group on Collaborative Spaces).
Her clinical knowledge in midwifery has considerably improved since she had a little girl named Victoire in June. Apart from spending days in children and women’s centres, she enjoys running, swimming and cycling, and hopes one day to compete in a triathlon.
- 29 July 2016, Dr Sunita Channa
Dr Sunita Channa works as a Research Fellow and PPI Liaison for the NIHR CLAHRC West Midlands Youth Mental Health theme focusing on early identification and intervention strategies at the University of Warwick. She has previously worked on the Early Detection of Psychosis theme of the CLAHRC Birmingham and Black Country pilot. The study was aimed at reducing treatment delays and improving care pathways for young people when seeking help for first-episode psychosis. She was proactively involved with the successful public health trial to reduce duration of untreated psychosis, which has directly informed governmental policy on waiting standards for access and treatment for psychosis. This research into early intervention in psychosis also led to the introduction of a ground-breaking service in Birmingham for young people aged 0 to 25 aimed to provide improved access to mental health services for children, young people, and young adults.
Currently, Sunita is involved in the online Eating Disorder Study in schools to screen emerging mental health problems, including eating disorders, to help early identification of young people at risk. She has also been setting up a consortium of Birmingham schools (SchoolSpace Network) as part of a digital hub aimed at supporting pupils and teachers, and to enhance working together to improve youth mental health through mental health training, education, development of professional skills, and screening tools related to adolescent mental health. Sunita has also been involved in qualitative studies exploring lived experiences of young people with eating disorders and first-episode psychosis.
Her other on-going research interests include: mental health in ethnic minority populations, youth mindfulness, and qualitative research in mental health. Besides having a keen interest in youth mental health, Sunita also has a great interest for public health and nutrition to promote physical and mental well-being in the community. Her MSc involved primary research with an extensive critical literature review to investigate “An Overview of Psychosocial and Socioeconomic Factors that Influence Food Choice.”
Outside of work, she enjoys being a mum to her four year old son, travelling, cooking vegetarian cuisines, and practising yoga.
- 15 July 2016, Dr Carole Cummins
Dr Carole Cummins is a senior lecturer at the University of Birmingham and is an academic lead for the child health arm of CLAHRC WM theme 1, Maternity and Child Health. She has enjoyed the opportunity to carry out applied health research that draws on her social science education. Carole also leads the Birmingham and Brunel Consortium External Assessment Centre, which was commissioned by NICE to carry out health technology assessment and facilitate primary research into medical devices, interventional procedures and diagnostics.
Carole first became interested in social science when she came across a volume of findings of the 1958 birth cohort study in her local library at the age of 14. The ensuing religious education essay advocated social rather than charitable action and was not appreciated. Carole went on to read politics, philosophy and economics at Oxford University, having been advised it was too difficult for girls to get in. An MSc in social research and social policy, also at Oxford, introduced her to quantitative social research and the uses of statistics.
She has worked in epidemiology and public health in both the NHS and the University of Birmingham, and her research has included epidemiological studies, clinical trials, and health technology assessment, often focused on the health of children. Carole has longstanding research connections with Birmingham Children’s Hospital NHS Trust and was the academic lead for the Child Health theme of the NIHR CLAHRC pilot for Birmingham and Black Country.
Carole enjoys performing music and sings with Birmingham Opera Company and shares the company vision. BOC aims for – and reaches – the highest artistic level in productions, where both the company and audience are drawn from the diverse people of the city, overcoming barriers to participation in opera and to wider society.
- 01 July 2016, Ms Jennifer Cooper
Miss Jennifer Cooper is a PhD student based within the Division of Health Sciences at Warwick Medical School and funded by the NIHR CLAHRC West Midlands. She obtained her BSc in Biological Sciences from the University of Warwick in 2011 where her final year project focussed on diagnostic tests for bacteria in Cystic Fibrosis patients, followed by an MSc in Management from Warwick Business School in 2013. She has previously worked at Warwick Clinical Trials Unit on ‘PETNECK’, a multicentre, randomised phase III trial for head and neck cancer patients. Her research interests include cancer screening, diagnostics/test performance, electronic health records and risk prediction models.
Jennifer’s PhD research focuses on improving the performance of colorectal cancer (CRC) screening through a risk adjusted testing approach. A new screening test (faecal immunochemical test – FIT) has been piloted in the UK showing improved uptake and the ability to detect more cancers and advanced adenomas. As of January 2016, the NSC (National Screening Committee) has recommended a change from the current gFOBT (guaiac faecal occult blood test) to the FIT. Jennifer is using this FIT pilot data to determine whether incorporating routinely available risk factors (such as age, gender, IMD from postcode and screening history) with the screening test improves test performance by developing a risk prediction model. This model will then be developed further using more complex statistical techniques, including neural networks, to take into account potential non-linear associations. She is also collecting lifestyle data (such as smoking, alcohol consumption & dietary factors) to determine whether this improves the algorithm further.
Jennifer has recently been awarded the NIHR Infrastructure Doctoral Training Exchange Scheme Award where she will be using the THIN database (anonymised electronic GP records) under Professor Tom Marshall and Dr Ronan Ryan based at Birmingham University. She will be determining the feasibility and accuracy of using electronic GP record data in a risk prediction model for CRC screening referral and investigating the value of using the FOBT in symptomatic patients based on NICE guidelines.
Outside of research, Jennifer has represented GB at American Flag Football at the 2015 European Championships in Spain and is a passionate fitness instructor.
- 17 June 2016, Ms Michelle Brown
Ms Michelle Brown is the Unit Co-ordinator for the Warwick Centre for Applied Health Research and Delivery (W-CAHRD), otherwise known as CLAHRC International. Her varied role includes organising events, workshops and meetings, co-ordinating the Director’s extensive international travels, and raising orders and invoices.
Michelle is an experienced administrator who joined the University of Warwick in July 2014. Previous roles include P.A. to the Deputy Head Teachers at a Coventry secondary school where, as well as administration duties, she managed the Career Academy programme; a national scheme to help prepare young people for the world of work through links with business and commerce, internships and a mentoring initiative. Other areas of expertise have included working as an ICT and English Lecturer in Adult and Further Education, an archive assistant at The Herbert Art Gallery, and a steward at both the Mead Gallery and the Warwick Arts Centre.
Michelle graduated from the University of Warwick in 2012 after completing a part-time BA Hons degree in English Literature. She is currently studying for a Masters degree in English Literature with the Open University, which she aims to complete by the end of 2017. She enjoys reading and creative writing, running, and fitness training. She recently completed the Coventry half marathon raising over £300 for Cancer Research.
- 03 June 2016, Dr Danai Bem
Danai Bem is a systematic reviewer, based at the University of Birmingham, working with CLAHRC Theme 3, Prevention and Detection of Disease, but is undertaking and supporting systematic reviews for all the different themes of the programme. She has experience with conducting both quantitative and qualitative systematic reviews and her main research interests are in the areas of cardiovascular disease prevention and rare diseases. She is also a member of the University of Birmingham STEM Ethical Review Committee.
Danai obtained a BSc (Honours) in Molecular Biology from the University of Dundee in 2002 and then completed a PhD in Cancer Sciences at the University of Birmingham in 2008. Prior to her role as a systematic reviewer she has worked as a post-doctoral research fellow gaining valuable knowledge in mild bleeding disorders (former member of the Genotyping & Phenotyping of Platelets, GAPP, group), rare diseases and genetics. Her experience with using animal models to study genetic diseases has contributed to her current interest in conducting systematic reviews of preclinical animal studies. In recent years a growing number of such reviews have been published in an attempt to improve the quality of animal experiments, which in turn could improve the translation of preclinical animal studies into clinical benefit.
Outside of work Danai enjoys cooking/baking with her 4 year old daughter, doing yoga and trying different cuisines from a variety of countries and cultures.
- 20 May 2016, Ms Amy Grove
Amy is a NIHR Doctoral Research Fellow at the University of Warwick and works with CLAHRC WM Theme 3, Prevention and Detection of Disease. She has a background in Health Psychology and conducts research in the field of health services management, health technology assessment and evidence-based medicine. Amy holds a NIHR Fellowship to the value of £300,000, which has enabled her to complete a research project as part of a PhD whilst receiving significant training and development. Amy’s project seeks to identify the barriers and facilitators to the implementation of NICE guidance into UK practice, in particular examining hip replacement surgery. Since beginning the Fellowship she has co-authored 15 peer-reviewed journal articles across orthopaedics, health technology assessment, and evidence-based medicine. Amy is also a co-investigator on a £4.5M NIHR award to deliver technology appraisal reviews. This work provides NICE with essential clinical and cost-effectiveness information to make decisions for current practice across the NHS.
Amy has strong methodological skills including systematic reviewing, epidemiology, medical statistics, and qualitative methods. Additionally, she is a certified project manager having worked across industry and academia. Her career aim is to become an internationally recognised health services researcher specialising in the interdisciplinary connection between evidence-based practice and implementation science in health care. Amy is also an avid Ultra marathon runner, with a passion for the outdoors.
- 06 May 2016, Dr Victor Adekanmbi
Victor Adekanmbi is a Research Fellow at Warwick Medical School, and works on CLAHRC WM Theme 3, Prevention and Detection of Disease. He is a Public Health Specialist with special interest and proficiency in health protection, clinical research and processes involved in ensuring reliable data collection and analysis. His research interest focuses on quantitative epidemiology with special interest in multilevel modelling to understand the effect of macro-, meso- and micro-level factors on population health. Other interests include maternal and child health research and understanding of the role of socioeconomic status in health outcomes and use of health care services.
Victor graduated with a Bachelors of Medicine and Surgery (MBChB) from the College of Health Sciences, Obafemi Awolowo University, Nigeria in 2005. Following this, he worked in a number of hospitals, then moved to the UK where he achieved a Masters in Public Health (Epidemiology and Biostatistics) from the University of Birmingham in 2010. He subsequently worked in various International Non-Governmental Organisations. He obtained his PhD in Health Sciences from the University of Warwick in 2015.
- 22 Apr 2016, Dr Rebecca Johnson
Dr Rebecca Johnson is a Research Fellow in Mixed Methods within the Division of Health Sciences at the University of Warwick and works with theme 3, the Prevention and Detection of Diseases.
Rebecca gained a BA in Sociology from the University of Minnesota in 2006, before being awarded a Masters in Public Health from the University of Warwick in 2008. Rebecca joined the university in 2008 as a Research Assistant with the Royal College of Nursing Research Institute. She also worked as a Research Associate on the WAVES project, validating the Warwick-Edinburgh Mental Well-being Scale (WEMWBS) for use with young people aged 13 to 16. In 2010 Rebecca began collaboration with Coventry Local Authority and Public Health on a large-scale programme of work to understand and improve public mental health in Coventry. This programme was the precursor to the Coventry Health Improvement Programme (CHIP) – the largest cross-organisational health programme of its kind undertaken by the Coventry Partnership. Rebecca completed her PhD in Health Sciences in 2014 by conducting a mixed methods analysis of the practicalities of public health practice and evaluation in CHIP.
Rebecca’s research interests lie in the intersection of social sciences, epidemiology and public health practice. She focusses on three areas of study:
- Design and integration of qualitative and quantitative data.
- Improvement of ‘healthy lifestyles’ (e.g. wellbeing, physical activity and fruit and vegetable consumption).
- Improving health through a better understanding of knowledge mobilisation, defined as the movement of formal knowledge into active use.
Rebecca is also a coordinator of the Qualitative and Mixed Methods Interest Group (QMIG); a member the Mixed Methods International Research Association (MMIRA) and the Society for Social Medicine (SSM). She has sat on the committee of Society for Social Medicine and the steering group for Institute of Advanced Teaching and Learning (IATL). She has recently been nominated for a Warwick Award for Teaching Excellence (WATE).
- 08 Apr 2016, Dr Emma Healey
Dr Emma Healey is a Research Fellow at the Institute for Primary Care & Health Sciences, Keele University. Following an undergraduate degree in Exercise Science at Manchester Metropolitan University, Emma undertook a PhD in Spinal Biomechanics, which was awarded in 2005. Emma then went on to her first postdoctoral role at the University of Leicester, where she managed a large multi-centre randomised control trial (RCT) focused on the primary care management of type 2 diabetes. Emma joined Keele in 2007 and since then her research has focused on osteoarthritis management within primary care and her growing reputation within this field has resulted in her being asked to co-author two editorials on osteoarthritis management in primary care, and being an invited speaker at the British Society for Rheumatology in 2015 and the European League Against Rheumatism conference in 2011. Emma has led the development of a number of osteoarthritis focussed training packages for health care professionals working in primary care. This has led to collaborations with Education for Health and Arthritis Research UK to further refine the MOSAICS trial practice nurse training, in the hope that this will facilitate the roll-out of this training within general practice.
Emma’s main research interests are linked with the Centre’s applied research programme focussing on the non-pharmacological management of arthritis and long-term conditions presenting in primary care. Over the past 14 years her research has focused on clinical trials. This research has been multidisciplinary, working together with individuals from the fields of physiotherapy, rheumatology, nursing, and general practice among others. Emma currently is principal investigator for two RCTs, one of which is the ENHANCE study based within CLAHRC WM Theme 4, Chronic Diseases (Integrated and Holistic Care).
In addition, Emma is Deputy Director of Postgraduate Research for the Institute of Primary Care & Health Sciences, an Associate Editor for BMC Family Practice and Musculoskeletal Care and a member of the Society for Academic Primary Care.
- 24 Mar 2016, Dr Ruth Pritchett
Dr Ruth Pritchett is a Research Fellow in CLAHRC WM theme three, Prevention and Detection of Diseases, at the University of Birmingham. Her current studies include the evaluation of a healthy lifestyle intervention in nurseries, and a cohort study on preventable maternal readmissions to hospital.
She completed her undergraduate BMedSc at the University of Birmingham, after which she worked as a Research Associate in Sports and Exercise Sciences, Public Health and Primary Care Clinical Sciences. Ruth then worked as a Research Fellow for the charity Action on Postpartum Psychosis in the Department of Psychiatry, gaining experience in maternal mental health. Whilst working as a Research Associate in Primary Care she completed her PhD in the effectiveness of exercise in the treatment of postnatal depression. Ruth has worked in various areas of behavioural medicine including, depression, psychosis, smoking cessation, exercise, and nutrition but has a particular interest in child and maternal health.
Ruth got married last September and still occasionally refers to herself as Ruth Blamey during presentations. She enjoys country walks, DIY, and being a civilian instructor with the air cadets, which often entails correcting teenager’s spelling mistakes – her current favourite …‘human beans’ … perhaps a predecessor of human beings?
Ruth has very much enjoyed the 12 years she has been with the University of Birmingham, with the great variety of research and experiences it has to offer, and hopes to be there for many years to come.
- 11 Mar 2016, Dr Celia Taylor
I am an Associate Professor in Quantitative Methods at The University of Warwick and have been in my current role for just over one year, following five years as Assessments Lead on the MBChB at The University of Birmingham. I am directly attached to CLAHRC-WM Theme 6, Research Methods, but my role includes providing support on quantitative methods to other themes. This gives me a huge amount of variety in my work, although my personal research focus is on errors and adverse events and human resources for health care. My current and recently-completed projects include an evaluation of the selection process for GP trainees funded by Health Education England; a cost-effectiveness analysis of a liaison and diversion service within the criminal justice system in England; developing a training intervention that focuses on maternal and child health for Community Health Workers in South Africa; and investigating the emotional support needs of patients with end stage renal disease. I also undertake psychometric analyses of the UK Prescribing Safety Assessment and of the Medical Schools Council Assessment Alliance’s ‘Common Content’ items, which are used to compare the passing standard for written finals examinations across UK medical schools.
Family time is precious, although as my husband has just started his PhD, our son is getting some early exposure to some interesting conversations on study design and statistics. We escape with regular runs (ok, jogs), shared morning doses of Postman Pat, and ‘nee-na’ (mostly fire engines but any emergency vehicle will do) and mini spotting.
- 12 Feb 2016, Ms Lee Gunn
Lee Gunn is a Research Fellow in Patient and Public Involvement (PPI) with CLAHRC WM Theme 5, Implementation and Organisational Studies, as part of a job shared post with Alison Hipwell, who was profiled in the blog a few months ago. She studied sociology before learning from a wide variety of jobs, including youth work, writing, program management and usability engineering. Then, after a few years teaching communication design to undergraduates at Coventry University, she decided to become a student again herself. She gained a masters degree in social research methods, and followed this with a series of funded research studies in the health service, based mostly on interviews and focus groups with patients, family carers, and health professionals.Lee enjoys finding out about people’s experiences and their different kinds of expertise. She hopes that collaborative research can improve mutual understanding and, eventually, help to alleviate distress. She is a member of the Royal College of Nursing Research Institute (RCNRI), and her current post is jointly managed by Sophie Staniszewska of the RCNRI and by Graeme Currie of Warwick Business School. Over the last year, Lee has been investigating the conceptualisation of patient and public involvement in the implementation of evidence. She is also preparing a study of parents’ and carers’ involvement in young people’s mental health services, in collaboration with Theme 2 of CLAHRC WM and with PPI advisors.Lee reads voraciously, visits the north east coast whenever she can, and tries to make time for both academic and creative writing.
- 29 Jan 2016, Dr Giovanni Radaelli
Dr Giovanni Radaelli is a Research Fellow at Warwick Business School and works for CLAHRC WM Theme 5: Implementation and Organisational Studies. Giovanni obtained his PhD in Management, Economics and Industrial Engineering at the Politecnico di Milano (Italy). His thesis studied the strategic and institutional role of generalist middle managers engaged with the diffusion of integrated care pathways in 14 Italian hospitals. His main research interests relate to change and development in professional organizations, with a specific focus on how healthcare professionals and managers engage with interdisciplinary collaborations to introduce radical innovations. In the past, Giovanni was involved in various national and European projects, contributing to the impact assessment of e-Health systems for risk prevention and management in 4 Hospitals in Italy, England and Finland (EU project: ReMINE); to the impact assessment of e-Health systems for patient activation (EU project: Palante); to study the implementation of a new tele-monitoring system for patients with chronic heart failure (National project: Nuove Reti Sanitarie); and to study the antecedents of knowledge sharing behaviors in 6 Italian Hospice & Palliative Care Organizations. In early 2014, Giovanni joined the University of Warwick. In CLAHRC WM projects, he undertakes qualitative research on the translation of evidence into new roles, services and technologies. Giovanni is currently conducting research on:The development of a new clinical service for patients with complex symptoms
The implementation of ‘advanced nurse practitioners’ in mental health
The diffusion of a personal health records in primary and secondary care
The design and implementation of a new Mental Health Service for Children and Young Adults aged 0-25 in Birmingham Children Hospital
All qualitative research encompasses interviews, non-participant observations; and other instruments of longitudinal analysis and grounded theory. Methodologically, while embedded in traditional research methods, Giovanni has a strong interest in exploring new modes of research, and particularly collaborative research methodologies (Mode 2). Giovanni also contributes to the course “Healthcare Management” for Master students in biomedical engineering at Politecnico di Milano; and has lectured in Bachelor courses of Business Administration; and MBA courses on health technology assessment.Outside of work, Giovanni enjoys football, American sports, stand-up comedy, long walks, Frank Zappa, hard rock and jazz fusion.
- 15 Jan 2016, Lena Al-Khudairy
Dr Lena Al-Khudairy is Research fellow in Evidence Synthesis at Warwick Medical School, and works on CLAHRC WM Theme 3, Prevention and Detection of Disease. Lena is responsible for Theme 3 Patient and Public Involvement. Her research interests are broadly in the areas of lifestyle factors and chronic conditions. She is working on a series of Cochrane systematic reviews of lifestyle interventions for childhood obesity. Other areas of interest include diabetes and nutritional epidemiology. Lena graduated in Clinical Nutrition from the Faculty of Applied Medicine, King Saud University (2006). Following her bachelors she worked as a Clinical Diabetes Dietician then moved to the UK to continue her postgraduate studies. She has a Masters in Diabetes and a PhD both from the University of Warwick (2009-2014).
- 18 Dec 2015, Dr Brian Litchfield-Cant
Dr Brian Litchfield-Cant is a Research Fellow at Warwick Business School. He joined CLAHRC WM Theme 5, Implementation and Organisational Studies after completing a PhD at Nottingham University Business School, exploring how to formulate strategies that are ‘owned’ across diverse and, often disputing, healthcare stakeholders. Brian’s current research focuses on how to support knowledge mobilisation, with specific projects including the mobilisation of safety evidence (Birmingham Children’s Hospital), triage evidence about infections (Coventry), and trauma for elderly patients (Heart of England NHS Foundation Trust). Whist Brian only recently completed his PhD, his interest in strategic planning has longer practice roots. As a public policy adviser and political speech-writer, Brian became frustrated with top-down planning that seemed to identify strong technical positions but gained little traction with practice. Re-training at the London School of Economics (MSc) supported his move into management consultancy where he specialised in facilitating strategic change. After a decade of supporting management teams across the world, the appeal of exploring strategic management more robustly proved too strong to resist, so he joined the CLAHRC WM team. Brian now has the most adorable baby so is no longer able to list any hobbies he enjoys!
- 04 Dec 2015, Dr Nicki Adderley
Dr Nicola Adderley is a Research Fellow working in the CLAHRC WM Theme 3: Prevention and Detection of Diseases team at the University of Birmingham. She obtained a BA and MSci in Natural Sciences from the University of Cambridge, before completing an MA, MPhil and PhD (Personal Religion in the Libyan Period in Egypt) in Egyptology at the University of Birmingham. Her current projects include analysis of a large primary care dataset from the THIN database looking at prevalence and treatment of atrial fibrillation over the last 15 years, the external validation of a prediction model for adverse outcomes in inpatients with diabetes, and studying for the MPH (part time). She also tries to stay active in Egyptology and is currently a committee member of the Birmingham Egyptology group and Copy Editor for the Birmingham Egyptology Journal; her PhD thesis was recently published as a monograph.
- 20 Nov 2015, Prof Ivo Vlaev
Professor Ivo Vlaev is a Professor of Behavioural Science at Warwick Business School and is involved in CLAHRC WM Theme 5, Organisational and Implementation Studies. He is also a Visiting Professor of Behavioural Sciences in the Department of Surgery and Cancer at Imperial College London.He obtained his BSc in Psychology and an MSc in Cognitive Science from the New Bulgarian University, and received his DPhil (PhD) in Experimental Psychology from the University of Oxford in 2003. He then went on to work as a researcher at the University of Warwick, University College London, and Imperial College London where he was later employed as a Senior Lecturer in Behavioural Sciences.Ivo’s primary research interest is studying decision-making (behavioral economics and neuro-economics) and behavioral change.How does the mind/brain integrate information to evaluate experiences, values, or risks? How does it strike a balance between stability and context sensitivity in judgment and decision-making? What neural mechanisms underlie this fundamental cognitive ability? This is the focus of his research, which is to advance understanding of human decision-making. It is a convergence of psychology, neuroscience and economics, which achieves results that none of the disciplines can achieve by themselves. His research projects show how the synergy of methods such as experimentation, brain imaging, and quantitative modeling can achieve results that neither method can achieve alone.
In 2010, Ivo co-authored the MINDSPACE report published by the UK Cabinet Office, advising local and national policymakers on how to effectively use behavioural insights in their policy setting. Since then he has been developing an integrated theory of behavior change, combining principles from psychology and behavioural economics. He also investigates innovative methods for developing and evaluating behaviour change interventions in health (professional practice such as safety and quality of care; patient behaviours such as medication adherence; and lifestyle risk factors such as diet and physical activity) and finance (motivating customers to manage their money more effectively; financial product design).He has acted as a reviewer for a wide range of journals and research funding organisations, as well as a consultant for a number of projects. These include work related to consumers’ risk perception, consumer price perception, consumer trust, brand memory, and applying behaviour change principles to change people’s decisions about their health, finances and environment. He is currently a member of the Behaviour Insights Expert Advisory Group for the Department of Health; the Knee High Design Challenge; and the Reference Panel on the UK Strategy for Financial Capability.Ivo is also an accomplished classical guitarist, winning two international prizes.
- 06 Nov 2015, Mr Peter Chilton
Mr Peter Chilton is a Research Fellow at the University of Warwick and works in the central CLAHRC WM theme conducting research, preparing papers for publication, and designing graphics and printed media. He graduated from the University of Birmingham in 2006 with a BSc (Hons) First Class in Human Biology and returned to the University to work as a Research Associate in Public Health in 2008. There he worked on a diverse range of research themes and projects, including policy and service delivery evaluation; hospital mortality and preventable mortality; Bayesian elicitation; the European HANDOVER Research collaboration; stepped wedge trials; and cost-effectiveness of health technologies. He joined the University of Warwick in late 2014 as a Research Fellow and has continued similar work.
Peter is also responsible for the CLAHRC WM News Blog, and would like to thank everyone for the positive comments, especially with regards to the portraits of CLAHRC WM Director Richard Lilford.
Outside of work Peter draws landscape pictures, plays board games, and enjoys spending time with his wife and two-year-old son.
- 23 Oct 2015, Dr Wendy Robertson
Dr Wendy Robertson is an Associate Professor in Public Health at Warwick Medical School, and works on CLAHRC WM Theme 3, Prevention and Detection of Disease. Her research interests are broadly in the areas of health promotion and health protection. She has just completed an RCT of a parenting intervention for the treatment of childhood obesity, “Families for Health”, comparing this with usual care in three sites across the West Midlands. She also helped to organise the conference on the 2nd July 2015 on childhood obesity for CLAHRC, in collaboration with Public Health England West Midlands. Other areas of interest include obesity in pregnancy and the methods for monitoring physical activity. In the area of health protection, she was involved with the investigation of a large outbreak of occupational respiratory disease at a factory that worked with metal working fluid within the West Midlands, and has maintained a research interest in this area. Wendy graduated in Sports Science & Physical Education from the University of Loughborough (1983), has a Masters in Public Health from the University of Birmingham (2002), and a PhD from the University of Warwick (2010). Her NHS career started in 1985 as a Clinical Scientist at Birmingham Heartlands Hospital. In 1992 she was appointed as a Health Promotion Specialist (No Smoking Coordinator) with Solihull Healthcare NHS Trust. In 2000 she became a Specialist Trainee in Public Health within the West Midlands Deanery, completing public health training in 2006. She is on the UK Public Health Register and was elected a Fellow of the Faculty of Public Health in 2006.
- 25 Sep 2015, Mr Colin Palmer
Colin Palmer is a Research Fellow at Birmingham and Solihull Mental Health NHS Foundation Trust and works for CLAHRC WM theme 2, Youth Mental Health. Through a background in vocational rehabilitation, brain injury and health psychology he developed a keen interest in the biopsychosocial model of health and how it can be used to improve health in unemployed populations. For his MSc Colin carried out a field study examining the role of self-efficacy and locus of control in disabled job-seekers on a government-funded Welfare to Work programme. He is also interested in how the study of human behaviour and digital technology can be used to create systems that support and promote early identification and treatment, applying this in his previous CLAHRC work on improving pathways/treatment delays for young people with first episode psychosis. Further, he has recently published a paper on teacher stress and the potential impact this has on teachers’ abilities to recognise and support pupil mental health. His current work for CLAHRC WM is aimed at predicting the emergence of eating disorders in a 3 year cohort of secondary school children. It is hoped that this research will assess the validity and suitability of digital screening tools for eating disorders at this age range, improve early detection rates and contribute further understanding on how eating disorders develop. Work on the theme also hopes to provide the foundation for a schools network known as “SchoolSpace,” which would act as a digital hub aimed at supporting pupils and teachers on the issue of mental health in educational settings.
- 11 Sep 2015, Mrs Jo Jordan
Mrs Jo Jordan is a Research Information Manager in the Arthritis Research UK Primary Care Centre at Keele University, working for theme 4, Chronic Diseases (Integrated and Holistic Care). Jo was awarded a BSc in Mathematics for Business from Middlesex University, followed by an MSc in Statistics from the University of Kent in 1993. She then joined Leeds University where she conducted systematic reviews for Clinical Effectiveness Bulletins. Since then she has worked as a Systematic Reviewer and, after completing a MA in Library and Information Science from Loughborough University, as an Information Specialist on a number of evidence-based products and publications. These include a large systematic review on chronic stable angina for Brunel University; the evidence base for shared decision-making tools for Dartmouth College, USA; developing clinical guidelines for the Chartered Society of Physiotherapy; and as an Information Specialist for The Cochrane Collaboration and BMJ Clinical Evidence. She started work at Keele University in 2004, and provides support and training in aspects of systematic review methods, particularly information retrieval, and gives guidance on information management. Jo has a general interest in methodological research for systematic reviews, with her main research interest in developing search strategies for systematic reviews, particularly for observational studies that are difficult to find in the large bibliographic databases, such as Medline and EMBASE. She also teaches systematic review methods and literature searching skills on a number of postgraduate and undergraduate modules, as well as training workshops on various aspects of conducting systematic reviews, information retrieval and reference management.
- 28 Aug 2015, Dr Alison Hipwell
Dr Alison Hipwell is a Chartered Psychologist and Research Fellow at Warwick Business School and is involved in Patient and Public Involvement / Engagement (PPI/E). Alison obtained her BSc (Hons) First Class in Psychology from Coventry University, before joining the Applied Research Centre for Health and Lifestyle Interventions to undertake her PhD. This applied research in Health Psychology was part-funded by the prestigious Arthritis Research Campaign’s Educational Research Fellowship, following an £111k award to Alison as PI. It assessed the willingness and ability of South Asian women with arthritis to participate in an educational behaviour change intervention. Alison worked with NHS and community leaders, interpreters and patients to discuss motivators/barriers to recruitment, retention and engagement with the intervention. This work allowed her to develop her international reputation in the fields of both diversity and qualitative methodology, presenting at conferences in Europe, Canada, and Australia. Alison joined the University of Warwick in 2010 and delivered a national NIHR Research for Patient Benefit (RfPB) programme funded qualitative study that examined factors affecting low uptake of diabetic retinopathy screening uptake in primary care (the FLURRI study), including social inequalities. She went on to work on a number of studies including around cancer screening and inequalities in health, and a literature review for the NHS National Screening Committee, whilst contributing to several funding bids. In 2014 she joined Warwick Business School, undertaking qualitative research (encompassing interviews and diary data collection, with focus groups planned) in relation to PPI/E. The focus of her research is on identifying lessons for more effective translation of clinical evidence into practice, aligned with the NIHR CLAHRC West Midlands mission. Alison is in the embryonic stage of developing research with under-represented groups, through collaboration with other interested research groups. In addition, she is also a reviewer for the NIHR’s RfPB and Warwick Medical School’s BioMedical Sciences Research Ethics Committee; a co-founding member of the Health Psychology of Warwick group; and a member of the West Midlands Interpretative Phenomenological Analysis group, Warwick’s cross-faculty Borders, Race, Ethnicity and Migration (BREM) Network, the Minority Ethnicity Health Network, PILAR (Public Involvement and Lay Accountability in Research), and Coventry Health Psychology Local Interest Group. Alison has considerable experience (from her previous career and voluntary work) of working with children, young people and adults from divergent backgrounds, and co-founded a fundraising charity that successfully raised ~£85k for an accessible community narrow boat (still operational). Her research interests include:
- Diversity and Ethnicity, including social and minority ethnic inequalities in health.
- Self-management of long-term health conditions, from the perspectives of patients, their families and carers, and multi-disciplinary health professional teams.
- Patient and Public Involvement, participation and engagement in research.
- Behaviour change educational intervention development.
- Qualitative research methods, including interpretative phenomenological analysis.
In her spare time, Alison enjoys travelling and wildlife, amateur photography, many genres of music from classical (as a trained flautist) to rock (as a regular festival-goer), interior design, and getting lost in the rain on family walking adventures in the wilds of Dartmoor.
- 14 Aug 2015, Dr Catherine Shneerson
Cathy Shneerson is a Research Fellow for CLAHRC WM Theme 1 Maternity and Child Health, at the University of Birmingham. Her research interests include cancer survivorship and self-management in chronic illness. She graduated from the University of Nottingham in 2004, with a 2:1 Master of Nursing degree. Following this she spent a number of years working as a staff nurse at Nottingham University hospitals. Initially this was as a surgical nurse, before she moved into oncology, where she gained experience working on the wards, in chemotherapy day-case, and latterly as an oncology research nurse. Whilst working as a research nurse, Cathy undertook an NIHR funded secondment (2010-11) to study for an MA in Research Methods. After gaining distinction, Cathy was then successful in gaining a PhD studentship at the University of Birmingham to undertake a mixed methods PhD, examining the self-management patterns of cancer survivors over time, from pre-diagnosis, during treatment, and into survivorship. Throughout, Cathy maintained her clinical skills through working as a research nurse on a number of Primary Care research studies. Since completing her PhD, Cathy has worked as a Research Fellow in a number of roles, including working with CRUK to explore how well the culture of research is embedded within the NHS. Her current work for the maternity side of Theme 1 involves working alongside clinicians and academics to develop and generate research projects that are relevant, and can be applied, to the maternity services in Birmingham. Cathy is involved in a number of ongoing research projects with the CLAHRC including:
- A focus group study exploring, from midwives perspectives, how they discuss, with women, their options about where to give birth.
- An evaluation of the newly implemented home birth service in Birmingham.
- Early discharge study exploring how many women and babies discharged from hospital in the early post-natal period, are readmitted to hospital within 28 days.
In addition, she is secretary for the Intrapartum Care Clinical Study Group 2014-15.
- 31 Jul 2015, Dr Ola Uthman
Dr Olalekan (Ola) Uthman is an Assistant Professor in Research Synthesis at the Warwick (International) Centre for Applied Health Research and Delivery (W-CAHRD), University of Warwick. As well as an interest in Evidence synthesis (in particular Bayesian network meta-analysis and generalised evidence synthesis), Ola’s research interests include developing and applying multi-level and natural experiments methods for analysis of large and complex datasets; and non-communicable diseases (especially cardiovascular epidemiology) and interaction with infectious diseases (especially HIV/AIDS). Ola has worked across a wide range of health technology assessments with a focus on HIV/AIDS and other infectious diseases. He is the recipient of the FAS Marie Curie International Postdoc Fellowship to pursue research on the social and contextual determinants of HIV/AIDS, with a special emphasis on cardiovascular risk factors among HIV infected individuals in sub-Saharan Africa.
- 17 Jul 2015, Mr Paul Bird
Paul Bird has recently joined CLAHRC WM as the Head of Programme Delivery with a particular focus on NHS and industry engagement. Prior to this he spent 12 years in a variety of operational and strategic roles within the NHS, culminating in his last post as Head of Operational Performance for University Hospitals Birmingham NHS Foundation Trust. Paul graduated from Newcastle University in 2001 with a Bachelor of Laws having taken a particular interest in medicine and the law, and later completed an MSc in Healthcare Policy and Management at the University of Birmingham, graduating in 2013. He has an interest in service redesign and the strategic commissioning of services, and, as can be seen from his above blog, is keenly watching the proposed devolution of health and social care budgets to regions. When not busy at work or at home, Paul can be found running or playing golf, both of which he has little talent, but much enthusiasm, for.
- 03 Jul 2015, Prof Elaine Hay
Prof Elaine Hay is Professor of Community Rheumatology at Keele University and Director of the Keele Clinical Trials Unit. She also works on CLAHRC WM Theme 4, Integrated Care. Elaine’s main research interests are linked with the Centre’s applied research programme investigating the efficacy and clinical effectiveness of non-pharmacological treatments for musculoskeletal pain and arthritis presenting in primary care. This research has contributed to international guidelines on osteoarthritis and back pain, and has been translated into national policy (Department of Health Musculoskeletal Services Framework). Evidence from their randomised trials of treatments for back pain (Hay Lancet 2005), shoulder pain (Hay Ann Rheum Dis 2003), tennis elbow (Hay BMJ 1999), and knee pain (Hay BMJ 2006, Foster BMJ 2008) have directly informed national guidelines (e.g. NICE OA Guidelines, ARMA standards of care) and informed the RCGP curriculum for Musculoskeletal General Practitioners with Special Interests (Hay et al, Rheumatology 2007). Locally, this research has directly translated into improving healthcare outcomes by influencing a service redesign of services for back pain and for chronic pain, which reduced wait times, resulted in high patient satisfaction and reduced primary care consultation rates (Stevenson et al, Physiotherapy 2004). Elaine came to North Staffordshire in 1994 as Consultant Rheumatologist at the Haywood Hospital and Senior Lecturer, Keele University. Her undergraduate and early postgraduate training was at the University of Sheffield, following which she moved to Manchester as Senior Registrar in Rheumatology. She was awarded an Arthritis Research Campaign Clinical Research Fellowship and completed her MD at the ARC Epidemiology Unit with Professor Symmons and Professor Silman in 1992. In 2004 she was promoted to Professor of Community Rheumatology and became Director of the Centre in 2010. Elaine is also Chair of Arthritis Research UK’s Musculoskeletal Pain Clinical Studies Group, Board Member of the NIHR National School for Primary Care Research, Panel Member NIHR Applied Programme Grants and Panel Member (Uo2) 2014 Research Excellence Framework.
- 19 Jun 2015, Dr Sam Watson
Dr Sam Watson is a Research Fellow in Health Economics working on CLAHRC Theme 6, HiSLAC, ePrescribing, and other projects at the University of Warwick. Sam obtained his BSc in Natural Sciences from the University of Bath in 2010, where he focussed on pharmacology and statistics. An MRC/ESRC/NIHR studentship to undertake a Masters in Health Economics at City University, London led him to transition from natural to social sciences. In 2011, Sam began a PhD in Health Economics at the University of Warwick, examining how the structure and function of neonatal units and broader economic conditions affect the health of newborns. Following this, Sam joined the CAHRD team as a Research Fellow in 2014.He is currently involved in a number of projects including studying the effects of consultant presence in hospitals at the weekend (HiSLAC) and the impact of electronic prescribing systems. Sam is also working on projects looking at using observational evidence in decision making and analysis, methodological issues in biomedical research, and causal modelling and evidence synthesis.Sam’s passion is rock-climbing and he loves to frighten the vertiginous CLAHRC WM Director with photos of himself climbing seemingly unscalable peaks.
- 05 Jun 2015, Ms Hannah Fraser
Hannah recently joined the CLAHRC WM Prevention and Detection Diseases theme (3) as a Research Project Officer, starting in April 2015. Her role is to provide effective administration and research support for the team. Hannah’s background is in Psychology, and she completed her BSc in Psychology at the University of Warwick in 2010 with a 2.1. Since that time, she has been working in administrative roles at the University of Warwick, including working closely with a Technology Appraisal team, Warwick Evidence, who undertake systematic reviews for the National Institute for Health and Care Excellence. Hannah has shown herself to be an incredibly dedicated committed member of staff with a real flair for both organisation and research. She took a short break in her career to take maternity leave and raise her lovely little boy Matthew, who is now 15 months old. Hannah is very keen to learn more about research and to undertake research training, and as part of her role will be working on systematic reviews. She will soon also be participating in various modules from the MSc in Research Methods at WMS. Her research interests are in visual marking and health screening.
- 22 May 2015, Dr Sophie Staniszewska
Dr Sophie Staniszewska leads the Patient and Public Involvement (PPI) and Experiences of Care Programme at the RCN Research Institute, Warwick Medical School, University of Warwick. Previously, Sophie was Director of Research at the National Centre for Involvement and Director of Graduate Studies in the School of Health and Social Studies. Sophie is also Visiting Professor at London Southbank University and Co-Editor in Chief of Research Involvement and Engagement, a Biomed journal focused on the development of the public involvement evidence base. Sophie has spent the last twenty years researching different aspects of public involvement and experiences, completing a range of projects focused on developing the evidence base of public involvement in research and health services. Most recently Sophie led the GRIPP 2 study, working with the EQUATOR Network at Oxford University, to develop international consensus on reporting guidance for public involvement. Sophie was Vice-chair of the Breaking Boundaries Review, which has now reported to the Chief Medical Officer in England, with a renewed vision for public involvement in health, which will be implemented over the next decade. Previously Sophie was Chair of the Evidence, Knowledge and Learning Group of INVOLVE, the NIHR advisory group for public involvement. Sophie is now an INVOLVE Associate having completed her term of office. Sophie is a member of the NIHR Evaluation, Trials and Studies Coordinating Centre(NETSCC) Patient and Public Involvement Reference Group and a member of the HTAi Patient and Citizen Involvement sub-group Steering Group, co-chairing the Methods and Impact Group. Sophie developed the Warwick Patient Experience Framework which underpins the NICE Patient Experience Guidance and Quality Standard. The Warwick Framework also underpins the ‘Improving Experiences of Care’ strategy in England, which is creating organisational alignment among key health care organisations responsible for delivering high quality care. Sophie was a member of the National Quality Board Patient Experiences Sub-group, as academic advisor. Sophie was a member of the Research Excellence Framework (REF 2014) Public Health, Health Services and Primary Care Panel in the UK. Sophie reviews for a range of funding bodies and international journals, is on the editorial board of the International Journal for Quality in HealthCare, Patient Experiences Journal, The Patient: Patient Centered Outcomes Research and supervises a number of PhD students.
- 08 May 2015, Dr Sarah Flanagan
Sarah Flanagan is an Honorary Research Fellow working on CLAHRC WM Theme 4, Chronic Diseases at the University of Birmingham. Sarah obtained her BA in Philosophy and Literature from the University of Warwick in 1994, and spent ten years working in the voluntary and statutory sector (BSMHFT) in the field of addictions. In 2004 she gained a MA in Philosophy and the Ethics of Mental Health, and in 2006 joined the University of Birmingham to pursue a Research Support Facility fellowship. She spent two years as a Research Associate working on various projects, including a study examining the barriers and facilitators for ‘hard to reach’ groups accessing health and social care services. In 2012 Sarah completed a Cancer Research UK funded PhD looking at the adverse outcomes of undergoing a colposcopy. Following this, she spent a year as a Research Fellow on a project exploring data methods collection utilised with teenagers and young adults with cancer. She is currently involved in four projects based at the Heart of England NHS Foundation Trust. One project is an evaluation of enhanced care pathways for older patients admitted with major trauma, and three projects are related to patients undergoing lung surgery.
- 24 Apr 2015, Dr Charlotte Connor
Dr Charlotte Connor is a Senior Research Fellow at the University of Warwick and works on CLAHRC WM Theme 2, Youth Mental Health. She was previously Senior Research Fellow for Birmingham and Solihull Mental Health Foundation Trust, working on CLAHRC BBC Theme 3 (early detection and interventions in psychosis). Charlotte obtained a psychology degree in the 1990s and completed her PhD in 2004. Charlotte’s research falls broadly into three categories: the mechanisms maintaining voice appraisals of those with auditory hallucinations, first-episode psychosis, and adolescent emotional resilience. Her present work streams are aiming to extend our reach into youth mental health and resilience and improving mental health services for children and young people; developing more online resources for young people with regard to their mental health; trialling an online eating disorders study in schools; and examining risk factors for depression in young people in primary care. An integral part of her research is a public health initiative targeting the key pathways in Birmingham that are responsible for delays in the treatment of psychosis, with the overall aim of dramatically reducing the duration of untreated psychosis (DUP) experienced by young people in Birmingham. The design and implementation of the intervention have been underpinned by several qualitative and quantitative pathfinder studies, led by Charlotte, which have highlighted help-seeking delays and delays within mental health services as major contributors to long DUP. These findings have led to both structural care pathway changes for psychosis via the ‘YouthSpace’ service, and the implementation of a community-focused ‘psychosis’ campaign to improve knowledge and awareness of how, where and when to seek help for the symptoms of psychosis. Charlotte is a keen crafter and also plays Susan Carter in BBC’s The Archers, as well as acting in other radio dramas on Radio 4.
- 10 Apr 2015, Prof Swaran Singh
Professor Swaran Singh heads the Division of Mental Health and Wellbeing at the University of Warwick and is an honorary consultant psychiatrist for the Birmingham and Solihull Mental Health Foundation Trust (BSMHFT). He is a Commissioner for the Equality and Human Rights Commission, mandated by the UK Parliament. He is also the Director of Research and Innovation, BSMHFT and joint mental health lead for West Midlands CRNHe initially trained as a surgeon in India, but become interested in mental health after working with children traumatised in ethnic violence in New Delhi. He trained as a psychiatrist and moved to the UK in 1991, going on to be a Lecturer and Consultant in Nottingham, and then Senior Lecturer at St George’s University London, where he developed the ETHOS early intervention service (a successful service that improved outcomes for young people with psychosis, while making cost-effective use of resources). Swaran joined the University of Warwick in 2006 as Professor of Social and Community Psychiatry. His research mainly focuses on health services, in particular early psychosis, somatisation, deliberate self-harm, cultural and ethnic factors in mental illness, mental health law, transitions, and medical education. He also has an interest in youth and minority mental health problems in the context of service configuration and delivery, and improving access to care and outcomes. His eternal struggle is between being focussed and productive and wasting time on idle speculation and meaningless meandering. When he can, he enjoys literature, poetry, theatre, blues, jazz, cricket, gardening, and fishing. One day he will write a book on the meaning of life.
Current and recent research projects include:
- ENRICH Programme Grant – understanding ethnic differences in pathways to care.
- AMEND Study – the impact of the 2007 amendments to the Mental Health Act, 1983.
- ENDEAVOUR Trial – improving vocational outcomes in early psychosis.
- BRIDGE Project – comparison of models to improve transitional care from CAMHS to adult mental health care.
- YouthSpace – development and evaluation of youth mental health services in Birmingham.
- Understanding mental health provisions for young offenders in the West Midlands.
- TRACK Study – transitions of care from CAMHS to adult services.
- MILESTONE Project – managing the link and strengthening transition from child to adult mental health care.
- IMPACT Study – improving mental health pathways and care for adolescents in transition to adult services in Northern Ireland.
- 20 Mar 2015, Dr Oyinlola Oyebode
Oyinlola Oyebode, known as Lola (rhymes with scholar not cola), joined the University of Warwick in August 2014 after receiving her certificate of completion of training from the Faculty of Public Health training scheme. Lola trained in London, Kent, Surrey and Sussex; she began at NHS Hillingdon, where she was awarded £100K to carry out a randomised controlled trial of text-messaging to increase uptake of breast cancer screening across the borough. Lola then worked with Jenny Mindell in the Health and Social Surveys Research Group at University College London on the Health Survey for England, publishing the cardiovascular chapter of the annual report, as well as papers on the use of Health Survey for England data by policy-makers, and fruit and vegetable consumption and mortality (the latter garnering a lot of media interest). Lola spent nine months at NICE with the Interventional Procedures, Technology Appraisals and Public Health teams; had an exciting health protection attachment at Colindale; negotiated the changed public health landscape in the tri-borough Public Health team (serving Westminster, Kensington and Chelsea, and Hammersmith and Fulham local authorities); and finally examined non-communicable disease risk-factors in low- and middle-income countries with Chris Millett at Imperial College London.
At Warwick, Lola has started projects looking at the use of traditional healers in low- and middle-income countries; the slow decline in total fertility rate in Sub-Saharan Africa; and salt-intake in urban informal settlements. However, Lola’s first baby is expected in April so she’ll be taking six months off to change nappies and sing nursery rhymes (and finally finish unpacking in Leamington Spa, and be a bridesmaid three times, and complete “The Wolf Among Us” computer game).
- 06 Mar 2015, Rev Barry Clark
After being brought up on and around farms in Lancashire, Barry spent ten years as a research biochemist in London and Newcastle upon Tyne, investigating the role of tryptophan in sheep and cattle nutrition – copies of his PhD available in all good bookshops! He then went to Oxford to train as a clergyman and spent most of the last 30 years working as a hospital chaplain in and around Birmingham, with medical ethics as a specialist interest. He was part of the group who spoke at the bid application for the pilot CLAHRC BBC many years ago, and sat on the Programme Steering Committee and Programme Executive Committee for that CLAHRC, as well as working with the electronic prescribing theme. In all cases, he was wearing a PPI (Patient and Public Involvement) hat. Now retired from the NHS, Barry continues his PPI interests with the new CLAHRC WM, and rejoices to see the significance of PPI increasing across many areas of research and innovation. He is also chair of PILAR (Public Involvement and Lay Accountability in Research), a collaborative group with Birmingham, Warwick and Keele Universities. In his spare time he is a vice-chair of South Birmingham Research Ethics Committee. Being true to his roots, he continues to support Bolton, who won the FA Cup in 1958. Now that is faith in action! He enjoys DIY, especially using tools he can plug in and make a noise.
- 20 Feb 2015, Ms Hannah Dodd
Hannah recently joined the CLAHRC WM as Programme Officer, starting in January 2015. Her role is to contribute to the development and success of the CLAHRC WM by providing effective administrative support to the Director and Heads of Programme Delivery. Originally from the North East, Hannah’s previous role was at the University of Sunderland, providing administrative support to their Research Beacons within the Faculty of Applied Sciences. She graduated from the University of Sheffield in 2009 with a BA in English Literature, and remained at Sheffield to do her masters in Management, which she completed in 2010. Since graduating, Hannah has gained experience in communications and publishing, having worked for a business information publishing company in Newcastle, first as a business writer and then as an editor, from 2011 to 2013. Hannah lives in Stratford-upon-Avon and enjoys playing volleyball and tennis, and going shopping.
- 06 Feb 2015, Dr Clare Jinks
Dr Clare Jinks is a Health Services Researcher at Keele University, with a background in Social Science. Following an undergraduate degree in Social Policy and Administration at the University of Brighton, Clare joined Keele as a Research Assistant in 1991. After working on a Regional Health Authority project investigating Resource Management in Mental Health Services, she completed an M.Phil (Health Policy) in 1995 using qualitative methods to understand the Internal Market in Mental Health Services. Clare started working in the field of musculoskeletal health in 1997, and for her PhD she developed, tested and applied a population screening instrument for identifying knee pain and disability in older adults. Clare has an interest in Patient and Public Involvement (PPI) in health research, and leads the PPI programme for the Arthritis Research UK Primary Care Centre and for the West Midlands regional Research Design Service. Her main research interests are in the field of osteoarthritis (OA) and joint pain in older adults. She is particularly interested in public health research and has undertaken both quantitative and qualitative studies to investigate the burden and impact of OA in the community. Recent studies have investigated experiences of knee pain and health care use, perceptions of prevention of joint pain, understanding self-management for knee pain in older adults, and developing and implementing a model OA consultation in primary care. Studies of PPI in primary care research include an exploration of Public Priorities for Joint Pain research, and an evaluation of PPI at the AR UK Primary Care Centre. In addition, Clare is an Associate Editor for BMC Musculoskeletal Disorders and a member of the Society for Social Medicine and European Public Health Association, the Scientific Panel for the Chartered Society for Physiotherapy’s Research Foundation, the scientific panel of the EUPHA, and a national Involvement Forum for RDS PPI leads, facilitated by INVOLVE.
- 23 Jan 2015, Dr Sarah Damery
Dr Sarah Damery is a Research Fellow at the University of Birmingham, and works on CLAHRC WM Theme 4, Chronic Diseases (Integrated and Holistic Care). Sarah began her career in Geography after qualifying with a BA from the University of Cambridge in 1999, and subsequently gained her PhD in 2006. In September 2008, she joined the Department of Primary Care Clinical Sciences at the University of Birmingham, initially working on a NIHR Research for Patient Benefit (RfPB) project, examining healthcare workers’ attitudes to working during pandemic influenza. She went on to work on a diverse range of projects centred around cancer and chronic diseases, focusing particularly on the early diagnosis of cancer; facilitating uptake of screening for colorectal cancer and human papillomavirus (HPV) vaccination; the use of herbal medicines by cancer survivors; evaluating the optimum post-treatment follow-up regime for patients with soft tissue sarcoma; and assessing repeated patient presentation to primary care as a means of identifying general practice patients at high risk of being HIV positive. She was also a senior advisor for the Birmingham Hub of the West Midlands Research Design service. She has extensive experience of working in multidisciplinary contexts and with mixed methods, including a range of quantitative, qualitative and participatory research methodologies, all of which stand her in good stead for her present role within CLAHRC WM Theme 4, where she is involved with several ongoing studies in collaboration with NHS and academic colleagues. These include a systematic ‘review of reviews’ focusing on the effectiveness of interventions to facilitate co-ordinated multidisciplinary care and reduce hospital use for people with chronic diseases; and a collaboration with Sandwell and West Birmingham Hospitals NHS Trust to assess whether electronic case finding tools can accurately ‘predict’ whether or not a patient is likely to be readmitted to hospital within 30 days of a previous inpatient stay. She is also working to develop a further series of projects currently at a more embryonic stage, focusing on integrated pathways for falls, electronic patient-consultant interactions and the evaluation of multidisciplinary, integrated care teams operating across healthcare settings to manage patients with multimorbidity and complex health needs.
- 09 Jan 2015, Dr Yen-Fu Chen
Yen-Fu is a Senior Research Fellow at the Warwick Centre for Applied Health Research & Delivery (W-CAHRD). He studied pharmacy at the National Taiwan University before coming to the UK for postgraduate training in biopharmacy at King’s College London and then public health and health services research at the University of Nottingham, where he obtained a PhD through a series of research concerning prescribing safety in primary care. From 2002 to 2014, he worked as a Systematic Reviewer and Research Fellow at the University of Birmingham and undertook systematic reviews and health technology assessments for many regional and national organisations, including the National Institute for Health and Care Excellence (NICE), on a wide range of topics covering pharmaceuticals, interventional procedures and public health. He joined W-CAHRD in June 2014. Yen-Fu has over ten years of experience in undertaking systematic reviews and health technology assessments. His current research focuses on systematic reviews related to health service delivery. In particular, he has active interest in developing methods for synthesising different types of evidence under a broad scope to inform intervention development, decision making and hypothesis testing. He also has longstanding interests in evidencebased medicine and drug/patient safety.
- 12 Dec 2014, Prof. Kate Jolly
Professor Kate Jolly is a Professor of Public Health and Primary Care, Deputy Head of the School of Health and Population Sciences, and Head of the Department of Public Health, Epidemiology & Biostatistics at the University of Birmingham. Kate qualified in medicine from Bristol University in 1986, and firstly trained in general practice, then in public health medicine. Her academic training took place at the Universities of Southampton and Birmingham and she completed her training in public health in 1999, becoming a senior lecturer in 2004. In 2011 she took on the role of clinical lead for public health in the School of Health and Population Sciences and was promoted to chair in 2012. Her research interests include maternal and child health, prevention of chronic disease, weight management and physical activity, clinical trials, health service research, and qualitative methods. She has received a number of grants from the National Institute for Health Research, Department of Health and local primary care Trusts. Kate is currently leading a large multicentre trial of selfmanagement for COPD (chronic obstructive pulmonary disease). This builds on a recently completed systematic review of selfmanagement interventions for COPD for the HTA. These projects build on a large body of research on COPD in primary care that is being undertaken in the School of Health and Population Sciences at the University of Birmingham. Other current research includes the development and evaluation of a supported manual for people with heart failure and their care givers. A randomised controlled trial is starting in January, with Birmingham as a recruitment site. This builds on past research on cardiac rehabilitation that Kate led: a trial to compare the outcomes of homebased and centrebased cardiac rehabilitation, the Birmingham rehabilitation Uptake Maximisation Study (BRUM) study; and BRUM CHF, an RCT evaluating a home-based exercise programme for patients with heart failure. Also commencing in 2014 is a multi-centre trial of an enhanced exercise referral scheme in Birmingham, in collaboration with Birmingham City Council. This builds on previous research evaluating a self-determination theory approach to an exercise referral programme in Birmingham (EMPOWER trial). As part of the CLAHRC BBC pilot Kate was involved in both the maternity and cardiovascular prevention themes. In the maternity theme she was part of the team (with Sara Kenyon and Christine MacArthur) undertaking an RCT of a pregnancy outreach worker service to see whether there was an improvement in antenatal care engagement, psychological health and infant outcomes of multi-ethnic women with social risk. With Christine MacArthur she led an RCT that evaluated the effectiveness of a breastfeeding peer support service on breastfeeding initiation and continuation rates (HoBBIT), and two systematic reviews of peer support for breastfeeding initiation and continuation. Other maternity and postnatal research includes a feasibility trial for preventing obesity in pregnancy (POPS), and a trial of exercise for postnatal depression (PAMPERs), both led by Amanda Daley. As part of the cardiovascular prevention theme, Kate led research evaluating a lay- led chronic disease education programme, which formed the substance for Manbinder Sidhu’s PhD. Manni was one of the first cohort of CLAHRC PhD students and successfully obtained his PhD in 2012. Collaborative work with South Birmingham Primary Care Trust led to an RCT evaluating the effectiveness of a range of commercial and NHSprovided weight management programmes for people in primary care (Lighten Up). As part of CLAHRC WM Kate is leading an evaluation of LightenUp Plus, which is evaluating a text-based weight maintenance intervention. Kate’s plans for further work in this CLAHRC involve collaborative work with local authorities, developing and evaluating preventive health programmes.
- 28 Nov 2014, Prof. Eivor Oborn
Professor Eivor Oborn is Professor of health care management at the Warwick Business School, and works for CLAHRC WM on Theme 5: Implementation and Organisational Studies. She is also a research fellow at Judge Business School, Cambridge University (where she received her PhD in 2006 on “Processes of Knowing in Multidisciplinary Team Practice: A Study of Specialist Cancer Care in England”) and holds an Honorary Research Associate in the Department of Bio Surgery and Surgical Technology at Imperial College London. She was previously a co-lead on the Judge Business School Implementation theme of the Cambridge and Peterborough CLAHRC from 2008-13. In 2012 she won the Diana Forsythe Award from the American Medical Informatics Association (AMIA) for work at the intersection of medical informatics and the social sciences, looking specifically at the implementation of electronic health records (EHR). This research, with colleagues at Cambridge University and University of Hawaii, examined how Health Information Technology, such as electronic records, is used in quite diverse ways by numerous healthcare occupations. Challenging the technologist assumptions of an ideal uniform use of information technology, she highlighted instead the need for EHRs to enable unity around patient care by integrating the multiple perspectives and assessments made by the diverse occupations during their ongoing patientrelated practices. More recently, in a NIHR-funded CLAHRC evaluation study of the initial nine pilot CLAHRCs, Eivor worked with colleagues at Warwick and Cambridge Universities to examine the various knowledge translation models set up across the CLAHRCs. Whilst some CLAHRC partnerships focused on developing boundary spanning roles, others focused on enabling established social networks between academics and clinicians, and others on developing a more multi-disciplinary and multi-stakeholder approach to conducting research. In outlining the strengths and weakness of the various approaches, this research drew from the field of innovation and leadership scholarship to provide guidance on how to manage the knowledge translation process. Her research interests include:
- Knowledge sharing and translation;
- Multidisciplinary collaboration and decision-making;
- Organisation change;
- Health service innovation;
- Technology use;
- Health policy reform.
More details and Eivor’s recent publications are available online.
- 14 Nov 2014, Dr Gill Combes
Dr Gill Combes is Deputy Theme Lead for Theme 4 Chronic Diseases (Integrated and Holistic Care) working at University Hospitals Birmingham. She is also an Honorary Research Fellow at the University of Birmingham where she leads a team of researchers working on different aspects of chronic diseases. Gill has spent all of her career working in the health sector. After completing a PhD on young people’s drinking and undertaking post-doctoral research in Universities and the voluntary sector, she decided to try and influence practice more directly by joining the NHS. She then spent 20 years in the NHS in a variety of management and leadership roles, in both commissioning and provider services, including three years as a PCT Chief Executive. Her main achievements have all had integration and service improvement at their heart and have been developed in partnership with social care. They include: re-designing fragmented disability services and re- locating them into a new state-of-the art building in Sandwell; setting up an integrated community rehabilitation service and a 20-bedded intermediate care facility; developing outreach health services to improve access for Pakistani and Bangladeshi communities; and setting up home-based hospice services. Gill has recently returned to academic research, undertaking several projects on renal dialysis service change before joining CLAHRC WM earlier this year. She has an academic interest in service change and in how patients with long-term conditions can be supported psychologically and emotionally. Additionally she is an NIHR reviewer for HS&DR research proposals, and is a Senior Associate at the Health Services Management Centre where she works on leadership programmes and provides coaching and mentoring to NHS managers, which helps her to maintain a good understanding of the challenges faced by leaders in the NHS.
- 31 Oct 2014, Prof. Max Birchwood
Professor Max Birchwood is Professor of Youth Mental Health at the University of Warwick. He trained as a clinical psychologist and is theme lead for CLAHRC WM Theme 2: Prevention and Early Intervention in Youth Mental Health, having previously headed the mental health theme of CLAHRC-BBC (2008-2013). His primary interests are prevention and early intervention in severe mental health problems, particularly as they emerge in young people, including:
- Evaluating the routine implementation of early intervention in psychosis teams.
- Applying the logic of early intervention models across the spectrum of youth mental health problems.
- Affective dysregulation in psychosis, including depression, social anxiety and PTSD.
- Testing his cognitive model of voices, and developing new interventions derived from this framework.
- Developing a model of collaborative care between primary and secondary care in the management of severe mental illness.
- School-based early detection and intervention in emerging mental health problems in adolescence.
Max worked for many years as clinical director of youth mental health services and as director of research and innovation at Birmingham and Solihull Mental Health NHS Foundation Trust (BSMHFT). He pioneered the concept and practice of early intervention in psychosis, both in the UK and internationally, and, in 1994, opened the first early intervention in psychosis service. This was informed by his concept of the ‘critical period’ in psychosis, which he translated into the mental health policy framework for the UK government as part of the NHS ‘National Plan’. The service has been replicated with over 140 teams across the country and internationally. He also leads the national evaluation of these services through the NIHR National EDEN and SuperEDEN programme grants.
In 2006 Max was given the Richard J. Wyatt Award for ‘outstanding contribution to early psychosis research and treatment’ by the International Early Psychosis Association. He has undertaken leading edge research into the application of cognitive behaviour therapy (CBT) to psychosis – his RCTs in acute psychosis (1996a, 1996b, 2000), reducing harmful compliance with command hallucinations (2004, 2014), and collaborative RCTs in high-risk psychosis (2012), are regarded as breakthrough trials and have been incorporated into UK NICE guidelines for schizophrenia. He has also undertaken extensive work developing the cognitive model of ‘voices’, particularly the role of appraisals of voices’ power and their role in driving affective dysregulation and compliance with command hallucinations. As clinical director and CLAHRC lead, he developed the ‘Youthspace’ youth mental health programme for BSMHFT. He is developing a public youth mental health model in Birmingham, promoting the early identification of emerging mental health problems in adolescence. Max is also a member of the NICE guideline development group for schizophrenia in children and young people (2013) and adults (2014).
His work in CLAHRC led directly to the recommissioning of Birmingham CAMHS and young adult services into a single care pathway for young people, 0-25, and has supported commissioners in developing the new service specification.
- 17 Oct 2014, Prof. Jon Glasby
Professor Jon Glasby is Professor of Health and Social Care and Director of the Health Services Management Centre at the University of Birmingham. He is also CLAHRC WM Theme Lead for Chronic Diseases (Integrated and Holistic Care). Jon is a qualified social worker by background and has previously worked as a freelance researcher/trainer and an independent investigation officer for a social services complaints unit. He specialises in joint work between health and social care and is also involved in regular policy analysis and advice to various government and other national bodies. His recent work with Downing Street on the future reform and costs of adult social care was launched by the former Prime Minister and appeared in a number of global outlets, including BBC News, the New York Times and The Financial Times. He is the author of a series of leading textbooks on health and social services, sits on the advisory board of The Policy Press, and is Editor-in-Chief of the Journal of Integrated Care. He is currently a Non-Executive Director of the Birmingham Children’s Hospital and, from 2003 to 2009, was the Secretary of State’s representative on the board of the UK Social Care Institute for Excellence (SCIE). He has also been involved with policy advice to the NHS Future Forum, the Ministerial Working Group on Health and Social Care Integration, the development of personal health budgets, and was part of the policy teams responsible for the 2007 Framework for Commissioning for Health and Well-Being, the 2006 NHS White Paper, and the 2005 Social Care Green Paper.
His main research interests are:
- Partnership working in health and social care.
- Strategic commissioning.
- Community care services and long-term care for older people.
- National, regional and local policy advice around direct payments and health care.
Jon has also been a regular contributor to practice-based publications such as Community Care and the Health Service Journal, and has previously been identified as one of The Times Higher Education Supplement ‘five ones to watch’ for the future of the social sciences, and is a previous winner of the Social Policy Association’s ‘best newcomer’ award.
- 03 Oct 2014, Ms Magdalena Skrybant
Magdalena is a Patient and Public Involvement (PPI) Representative on the CLAHRC and currently contributes to the Chronic Diseases theme. Magdalena was also a PPI Representative on the CLAHRC BBC Pilot and was involved in creating the initial CLAHRC WM bid. In addition to ensuring the patient voice was heard in the design of the bid, Magdalena also attended the interview in London. Magdalena has a background in languages and studied Russian with Polish at the University of Sheffield. This involved study periods in Russia, where she studied at Moscow State Linguistic University, and the Jagiellonian University in Krakow. Magdalena returned to Krakow to complete her Masters in European Studies and wrote her dissertation on British representations of the Katyn Massacre. Whilst studying in Poland, Magdalena met people who had been instrumental in leading the resistance against the Communist regime and, after a brief spell working in the private sector, she returned to her studies and wrote a PhD thesis on relations between workers and intellectuals in the Polish opposition, 1976-1981. After completing her PhD, Magdalena has pursued a career in University administration and she currently works in the School of Cancer Sciences, University of Birmingham, as a School Teaching Coordinator.It was during her fieldwork for her PhD studies that Magdalena was diagnosed with rheumatoid arthritis and several autoimmune conditions. Given her research background and interest in the translation of ideas and skills from academia to health care, Magdalena sought opportunities to become involved as a Patient Representative. Magdalena found her role in the CLAHRC BBC pilot extremely rewarding, and is looking forward to continuing her role as a PPI representative in CLAHRC WM and seeing the ambitious research proposals come to fruition.
Outside of PPI and work commitments, Magdalena enjoys spending time with her family. She has a ten-month old daughter, Constance, and she also spends time with her nieces and nephews. Magdalena enjoys reading and her favourite author is Dostoyevsky, although these days she opts for lighter reading!
- 19 Sep 2014, Prof. Tom Marshall
Professor Tom Marshall is a Deputy Director of CLAHRC WM, and a Professor of Public Health and Primary Care at the University of Birmingham. His main medical speciality is in Public Health Medicine, but he also has trained in General Practice and has studied Health Economics.After graduating from the University of Edinburgh, Tom undertook clinical posts in hospitals in the UK, South Africa and Gibraltar, acquiring an interest in the wider determinants of health and the organisation of health care systems. After obtaining an MSc in Health Economics, he returned to clinical medicine to complete vocational training in general practice and his MRCGP before specialising in public health medicine. During this period he completed an MSc in Public Health, obtained the MFPH, and spent a year working for the WHO Regional Office for Europe on health care systems and health care reforms in European countries. In 1999 Tom moved to an academic post in public health at the University of Birmingham and completed his PhD – an economic evaluation of cardiovascular disease prevention in primary care. He later spent a year as a Commonwealth Fund Harkness Fellow in Health Policy at Harvard Medical School, before becoming Programme Director of the Master of Public Health course at the University of Birmingham.Tom has contributed to local, national and international media in relation to health services research, particularly in relation to prevention of cardiovascular disease. In 2000 his seminal paper on the potential for taxation to influence diet achieved worldwide media coverage and has sparked a number of subsequent papers by other authors. His research publications cover a number of related areas:
- Cardiovascular disease prevention, in particular organising primary care services to improve the efficiency of cardiovascular disease prevention in primary care.
- Patient views and preferences in relation to taking medication to prevent cardiovascular diseases.
- Factors influencing General Practitioner decision-making in relation to cardiovascular prevention.
- The use of statistical process control for quality improvement in health care and for monitoring mortality rates in primary care.
- The analysis of electronic primary care records to evaluate and improve primary health care, prescribing and epidemiology.
- The use of electronic primary care records to assist earlier identification of chronic diseases, such as patients at high-risk of colorectal cancer, of cardiovascular disease, and of left ventricular systolic dysfunction.
- The effects of variation in the measurement of risk factors on clinical decision-making.
He is a reviewer for many grant-awarding bodies. He has been a member of the NIHR Research for Patient Benefit grant awarding committee, and also was a member of the editorial board of the Health Technology Assessment journal.
Tom is also a keen runner, completing the 2014 London Marathon in 3 hours, 12 minutes.
- 05 Sep 2014, Ms Hilary Fanning
Hilary Fanning is Director of Research Development & Innovation at University Hospitals Birmingham NHS Foundation Trust (UHB), where she manages the Trust’s research funding portfolio and oversees a department that supports the full spectrum of research at UHB, including research grant preparation and delivery of clinical and medical devices trials. She is an executive member of the Birmingham Health Partners, and her role includes senior operational responsibility for developing and driving forward the research strategy of BHP, and the design and delivery of Birmingham’s Institute of Translational Medicine (a £24m project with funding support from central UK government).Hilary qualified as a registered nurse in 1985, going on to specialise in renal nursing. She has worked in both the public and private health sectors in the UK and Ireland. Prior to taking up her current post, she has provided senior operational leadership for a number of key Trust projects including, reconfiguration of surgical services, introduction of “hospital at night”, electronic medical records for outpatients design, and delivery and whole-site redesign of clinical services in preparation for the move to UHB’s new hospital. She works closely with the CLAHRC WM Director on many projects, but particularly CLAHRC WM itself.
- 22 Aug 2014, Prof. Aileen Clarke
Professor Aileen Clarke is Professor of Public Health Research, Director of Warwick Evidence, and Director of the Division of Health Sciences at the University of Warwick.
Her research interests focus on evidence for clinical practice, patient-centred care and policy, and health technology assessment, and involve using multi-disciplinary methods to distil the best evidence and to promote its use at policy, organisational, population and individual levels for quality improvement. Research undertaken includes health technology assessments and systematic reviews for policy bodies; looking at relationships between research evidence and decisions in health commissioning; getting research evidence into individual clinical decisions; methodological work on survival analysis, cost-effectiveness and meta-analysis to improve HTAs; and systematic reviews relevant to low- and middle-income countries.Other work that Professor Clarke is involved in includes the Warwick (Cochrane) Heart group, undertaking reviews on primary prevention of coronary heart disease; the Coventry Household Survey, a successive annual cross-sectional cohort of ~3500 Coventry residents surveyed on their health and well-being; and the West Midlands Research Design Service.Professor Clarke is a member of the NICE Technology Appraisal Committee and Vice Chair of the Faculty of Public Health Research Committee and currently serves on the editorial board of the Health Technology Assessment (HTA) journal, chairing its audit committee. She has had a long-standing role in the European Public Health Association. Previously she has worked as both a practising GP and as a public health physician. More recently she worked with the Nuffield Trust and with Warwick Business School on evidence use and uptake, decision-making, commissioning and choice in the NHS.She was recently awarded a Service Medal by the Faculty of Public Health, University of Warwick for her work as interim Chair and Vice Chair of the Faculty of Public Health Research Committee over several years. Read More
- 08 Aug 2014, Ms Jo Sartori
Jo Sartori is currently Head of Programme Delivery for CLAHRC WM. Jo is an experienced programme manager with a speciality in communications, stakeholder relations and engagement. She has worked for the University of Birmingham since 2011 and her previous roles have included Knowledge, Communications and Engagement Manager, and Programme Manager of CLAHRC for Birmingham and Black Country.Jo graduated from the University of Manchester in 2007 with a BA in Economics and Social Science degree, specialising in politics and sociology. Since graduating, she has held a variety of public sector roles, such as supporting organisations in the West Midlands to apply for European Funding and the programme management of a £6.8 million regional portfolio of health and wellbeing projects funded by the BIG Lottery.Last year, Jo managed and coordinated the successful £30 million application for CLAHRC West Midlands, which included collaborative working with three Universities and over 15 NHS organisations and Local Authorities.On 1st September 2014, Jo is joining the University of Warwick to manage the Centre for Applied Health Research and Delivery (W-CAHRD). Her new role will oversee the expansion of “CLAHRC for Africa,” with the aim to build the centre to excellent international standing with a focus on international research and improving the health of poor and vulnerable populations. Therefore, keep your eyes peeled on the CLAHRC International section of these blogs to see how things are progressing.
- 25 Jul 2014, Mr Gavin Rudge
Gavin Rudge is a Research Fellow at the University of Birmingham, with over 13 years experience in health services research and information analysis.His research interests include health geography, quality in healthcare and data mining, and he is currently involved in research in:
- Health and housing – the impact of improvements in social housing in a deprived area on health outcomes.
- Food and environment – using novel geo-statistical methods to measure the food environment of a population.
- Health technology – assessing the utility of routinely collected datasets to assess the diffusion of emerging technologies in medical devices.
- Quality and outcome in secondary care – a case-controlled study of 24/7 consultant care in acute hospitals.
Further, he supports a number of other research programmes with analysis and visualisation of spatial variables, or handling neighbourhood profiling data.
He has also recently been a successful co-applicant for a three-year NIHR-funded study on exploring the effects of extended consultant hours in acute hospital settings.
- 11 Jul 2014, Dr Ngianga-Bakwin Kandala
Ngianga-Bakwin Kandala is currently a Principal Research Fellow in Health Technology Assessment and has a joint appointment with the University of Oxford (KEMRI-Oxford Collaborative Programme) and the University of Warwick, Warwick Medical School, Division of Health Sciences, Population and Evidence Group. In addition, he is visiting Professor at the University of Witwatersrand, South Africa.
He previously worked as a Medical Statistician at the University of Southampton and King’s College London; was a Mellon foundation fellow at the University of Montreal, Canada; an Associate Lecturer at the University of Lagos, Nigeria; and an Associate Professor at the University of Botswana. He obtained a PhD in Economics/Statistics from the University of Munich (LMU) in Germany in February 2002.
For the past 16 years, his main research interests have been in Bayesian statistical methods and their application to epidemiology and health. In particular, addressing maternal and child health and a variety of health-related health inequalities (including chronic conditions) both in the developing countries and command economies, using large scale household data. He has been Principal Investigator on grants from Economic and Social Research Council (ESRC), the British Council and the National Institute for Health Research (NIHR).
Kandala has published widely in high-impact, peer reviewed journals in both the field of Statistics and Health in diverse populations. Further, he has recently published a book with Springer Science on ‘Advance Techniques in modelling Maternal and child health in Africa’ (2014).His current research interests include, statistical methods applied to epidemiology, survival analysis, meta-analysis, Bayesian Analysis, Health Economics and Health Technology Assessment.
- 27 Jun 2014, Prof Christian Mallen
Professor Christian Mallen works with our Theme 4 team, Chronic Diseases (Integrated and Holistic Care) and is a practising GP at Kingsbridge Medical Practice in Newcastle under Lyme, seeing patients one day a week. He is based at Keele University where he is Director of Academic General Practice and research lead for Arthritis and Long Term Conditions. Christian’s research interests focus on improving the management of common rheumatological complaints in primary care, particularly diagnosis of musculoskeletal disorders in a general practice setting. His current portfolio of studies include epidemiology and randomised trials focusing on osteoarthritis, gout, rheumatoid arthritis and polymyalgia rheumatica. His CLAHRC WM work includes a large pilot trial assessing the benefits of integrated care for patients with multiple long term conditions. He is also an editor of the European Journal of General Practice, a review board member for Education for Primary Care, and a board member and director of training for the NIHR School for Primary Care Research. He was recently awarded the John Fry research award by the Royal College of General Practitioners.
Remaining in clinical practice is important to Christian, where patient encounters frequently inform future research questions. He is married with two young children (Sam and Alice), four chickens, 30 guppies and two tortoises. He enjoys reading trashy novels, nice wine and topping up his vitamin D levels.
- 30 May 2014, Prof Julian Bion
Prof Julian Bion is Professor of Intensive Care Medicine at the University of Birmingham and honorary consultant in Intensive Care Medicine at the Queen Elizabeth University Hospital, Birmingham. He has contributed greatly to intensive care medicine and patient safety globally, playing a key role in improving the quality of care of acutely, critically ill patients through development of a programme of high-quality education and training.His research interests include improving the management of patients with sepsis, and acutely ill patients in general, enhancing the reliable delivery of best practice care, and improving patient outcomes through professional education and training.He is a Chair on the Novel Therapies Committee at the Queen Elizabeth hospital; Associate Non-Executive Director for the Worcestershire Acute Healthcare Trust, and Chair of their Quality Governance Committee; a Civilian Advisor to the Royal Air Force on intensive care medicine; Chair of the NICE Acute Medical Emergencies Guideline Development Group; Chair of the UK Critical Care Leadership Forum; a member of the World Health Organization’s sepsis group (within the Integrated Management of Acute Illness programme), helping to develop best practice guidance for resource-limited environments; and a member of the national steering committee for the HTA-funded ProMISe study on Protocolised Management In Sepsis. He is also Chief Investigator on the £1.4m NIHR HS&DR High-Intensity Specialist-Led Acute Care (HiSLAC) grant, collaborating with other CLAHRC WM staff, including Alan Girling (statistics), Gavin Rudge (database analysis), and Richard Lilford (health economic analysis alongside Prof Jo Lord of Brunel University).Previously, he was the senior clinical lead for the Department of Health funded National Patient Safety Agency’s ‘Matching Michigan’ project, which aimed to minimise blood stream infections associated with the use of central venous catheters; was a member of the Executive Committee of the Surviving Sepsis Campaign, which developed best practice guidance in the management of patients with severe sepsis and septic shock; established a European collaboration to determine genetic predisposition to mortality from septic shock (GenOSept project); been President of the European Society of Intensive Care Medicine (2004–2006), where he was instrumental in establishing the European Critical Care Research Network; conceived and led a European competency-based training programme for intensive care (CoBaTrICE), which was subsequently rolled out world-wide; and in 2010 he was elected as the first Dean of the Faculty of Intensive Care Medicine.Prof Bion is also an expert cook, wine connoisseur, and avid bibliophile.
- 16 May 2014, Ms Louise Rowan
Louise Rowan is the Communications Fellow for CLAHRC WM.
She’s worked with CLAHRC since the beginning of 2013, disseminating findings for the previous Health Service Redesign and Stroke themes for CLAHRC for Birmingham and the Black Country.
A qualified newspaper journalist with more than twenty years’ experience in Public Relations, Louise began working in health communications in 2007 when she joined University Hospitals Birmingham NHS Foundation Trust as Media Communications Manager. She has an MA in Mass Communications from the University of Leicester.
Any spare time is spent either travelling or planning the next ‘big adventure; and having just returned from North India she’s currently reading up on a return trip to Malaysia and Cambodia. However, if she does have a weekend in the UK, she can be kept (more than) happy with a CAMRA (Campaign for Real Ale) beer festival or real ale pub.
Louise will be working closely with communications teams from partner organisations to share the work of CLAHRC WM. If you have any news, views or communications opportunities, then please contact her at email@example.com
- 02 May 2014, Dr Sara Kenyon
Dr Sara Kenyon is a Senior Lecturer and maternity researcher at the University of Birmingham and is part of the team working on the Maternity and Child Heath theme for CLAHRC WM. She has a passion for evidence-based maternity care and involving participants in research, and has spoken widely on antibiotics for preterm labour, intrapartum care and labour dystocia.
Amongst other duties, Sara currently chairs the RCOG Intrapartum Care Clinical Study Group and is a member of the collaboration continuing the national programme of work investigating maternal deaths, stillbirths and infant deaths, including the Confidential Enquiry into Maternal Death (MBRRACE-UK). She has recently lead two RCTs in maternity care:
- HOLDS, a pilot study of high- versus standard-dose oxytocin for delaying labour for nulliparous women at term.
- ELSIPS, an evaluation of the Pregnancy Outreach Worker service for women identified with social risk.
As part of the work undertaken by the CLAHRC BBC pilot, Sara, together with Dr Nina Johns from Birmingham Women’s Hospital, developed, implemented and evaluated a system to identify and prioritise the clinical urgency of women attending Maternity Triage for unscheduled visits. This maternity traige system is currently being further evaluated before application for a definitive study.
Sara is co-applicant on the INFANT trial, and is on a number of Trial Steering Committees (Opptimum, BOOST-II UK and Building Blocks).Previously, Sara was Chief Investigator for the ORACLE Children Study; a group lead for NICE Intrapartum Care guidelines; and was a founding member and Chair of Antenatal Results and Choices, a national charity started in 1988 that provides non-directive support and information throughout antenatal screening.
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- 16 Apr 2014, Ms Nathalie Maillard
Nathalie Maillard is Head of Programme Delivery for CLAHRC WM. Nathalie is an experienced operations and research manager with skills in project and programme management, health services research management and stakeholder engagement. She graduated from University of Birmingham in 2002, with a BMedSc degree, specialising in neuroscience. In 2008 she completed an MSc in Health Care Management & Policy at the same University, specialising in Health Economics (for which she won a prize for her dissertation that explored methods for priority-setting in healthcare).Nathalie has worked for the University of Birmingham since 2004. Her previous roles include Programme Manager of CLAHRC for Birmingham and Black Country; Deputy Programme Manager for Department of Health research commissioning programmes; and Research Associate. She took a short-break in her career to take maternity leave (Aug-12 to Jun-13) and is now the mother to fraternal twin girls.
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- 04 Apr 2014, Mr Alan Girling
Alan Girling has a first degree in Mathematics from Cambridge and trained as a Statistician. Until 2003 he lectured in the Mathematics department at the University of Birmingham, researching mostly on methodological developments inspired by practical problems. He joined the department of Public Health and Epidemiology in 2004 to work in the MATCH collaboration – an EPSRC funded project based at Brunel University which also involved the Universities of Nottingham, Ulster and Birmingham. Here he pursued ideas in the early-stage economic and business evaluation of medical devices, using Bayesian approaches to inform commercial development decisions. His role in MATCH also entailed research collaboration and consultancy with large device manufacturers. He continues to contribute as statistician to a number of medical studies, most recently to funded projects on electronic prescribing and specialist weekend provision in hospital settings. A recent methodological interest concerns the developing topic of stepped designs for cluster trials. He has developed a new design, with optimal properties, which combines features of stepped-wedge and parallel trials and is currently engaged (with co-workers) on evaluating the impact of unequal cluster sizes on the precision of such designs.
- 21 Mar 2014, Prof Graeme Currie
Professor Graeme Currie is Professor of Public Management at the Warwick Business School, and Co-Director of NIHR CLAHRC WM. His research interests include leadership, knowledge mobilisation, innovation, strategic change, management learning with a on focus public services organisation, and management (health and social care, education, police, local government).
- 07 Mar 2014, Dr Jamie Coleman
Jamie Coleman is a clinical academic who holds a HEFCE-funded senior lecturership in Clinical Pharmacology and Medical Education. He is currently head of year 3 of the MBChB programme, Therapeutics Lead for the BDS Dentistry course, and a senior clinical examiner for Year 5 MBChB in Medicine and Therapeutics. He also chairs the National Prescribing Skills Assessment Board, is a member of the Pharmacovigilance Expert Advisory Group of the MHRA and sits on the British National Formulary Advisory Board.