Read the scientific advice team's biographies.

We have a technical team of scientific advisers and a coordination team of project managers. Please email scientificadvice@nice.org.uk to get in touch with us.

 

Jeanette Kusel, director for scientific advice

Jeanette is responsible for the stewardship and growth of the NICE scientific advice business unit, which includes all aspects of business development, management, project delivery and governance. She takes an active role in the sign-off and quality assurance of work across all services offered by the team. She chairs many of the national and parallel scientific advice meetings for medical device and pharmaceutical product developers.

Jeanette is also a co-deputy director for the Centre for Health Technology Evaluation and is supporting the set-up of the NICE Office for Digital Health.

Previously Jeanette held the positions of head of health technology assessment and health economics and scientific director at Costello Medical, a consultancy within the life science sector. She has broad research interests across different methods for health technology evaluation and has previously worked on clinical trial design, health economic modelling and quality of life measurement.

Jeanette studied undergraduate natural sciences at the University of Cambridge and postgraduate health economics at the University of York.

Dr Jacoline Bouvy, technical director

Jacoline signs off and quality assures work across all services offered by the scientific advice team. She chairs national and parallel scientific advice meetings with medical device and pharmaceutical companies. She also works on the joint NICE, NHS England and Department of Health and Social Care (DHSC) project that's developing new payment models for antimicrobials. And she is chief analyst for NICE on the DHSC's health and care appraisal working group.

Previously Jacoline worked in our science policy and research team. She led our work on a number of pan-European research projects, including the European Health Data and Evidence Network, health technology assessment of histology independent cancer drugs, and the use of patient preference studies in health technology assessment.

Before joining NICE, Jacoline worked at the European Medicines Agency. Prior to this she held postdoctoral positions in the Netherlands, at Erasmus University Rotterdam and Utrecht University. She has a PhD from Utrecht University and an MSc in Health Economics from Erasmus University.

Rebecca Boffa, senior scientific adviser

Rebecca is a clinical evidence reviewer and research methodologist. She has extensive experience leading on the appraisal of health technologies. She acts as technical lead on scientific advice projects, providing guidance on evidence generation for health technology assessment decision making. She is also involved in the artificial intelligence multi-agency advice service, which is a collaboration between regulatory partners.

Previously, Rebecca worked in an evidence review group commissioned by the National Institute for Health Research to support our evidence based decision making. She led on the critique of clinical evidence across a range of projects within the NICE health technology evaluation programme. Prior to this she worked as a senior research fellow in NICE guideline development at the Royal College of Physicians.

Rebecca holds a Master of Public Health (evidence-based healthcare) with distinction from the University of Manchester, where she also completed her undergraduate studies in neuroscience and psychology.

Caroline Bregman, senior scientific adviser

Caroline is involved in a range of scientific advice projects and parallel scientific advice procedures with other health technology assessment and regulatory agencies, as well as delivery of educational seminars.

Previously, Caroline worked in the Technology Appraisals Programme at NICE. Before joining NICE, Caroline worked in a consultancy within the life science sector where she led on the development of health technology assessment dossiers for submissions in the UK and in France.

Caroline holds a Doctorate in Pharmacy from Paris Descartes University and an MSc in Health Economics from Paris Dauphine University.

Dr Emily Crowe, principal scientific adviser

Emily’s role involves technical leadership on scientific advice projects and attending parallel scientific advice procedures with other health technology assessment bodies and regulatory agencies. Emily also delivers educational seminars and contributes to business development for scientific advice.

Emily has a PhD in Biochemistry and a Medical Research Council postdoctoral research fellowship in immune cell biology. Previously, she worked as a research fellow in NICE guideline development at the Royal College of Physicians, and as coordinator of the Medical Research Council Network of Hubs for Trials Methodology Research.

Clíodhna Ní Ghuidhir, principal scientific adviser

Clíodhna is our lead for developing a multi-agency advice service for artificial intelligence (AI) and data driven technologies. This is a collaboration between regulatory partners. It will offer information, advice and support on regulation and health technology assessment to developers and adopters of AI and data driven technologies in health and care.

Previously, Clíodhna worked on a broad range of national innovation programmes, including real-world evaluation and the NHS test beds programme. Most recently, she led the alpha development of an online 'single front door' for innovators to the NHS, known as the innovation service. She is a fellow of the Improving Global Health through Leadership programme and undertook a quality improvement placement in 2017 at the Western Cape Department of Health in South Africa.

Clíodhna holds an MSc in Healthcare Leadership with distinction from the University of Birmingham and Alliance Manchester Business School. She completed her undergraduate studies at Trinity College Dublin, with a major in psychology.

Pilar Pinilla Dominguez, principal scientific adviser

Pilar is principal scientific adviser in the NICE International and NICE scientific advice team. Pilar is responsible for and leads technically on the NICE International services, contributing to its strategic objectives and the delivery of different international engagements through workshops, educational seminars and international consultancy projects. She has extensive experience in delivering these services at a national and international scale and represents NICE in a series of NHS International groups.

As part of her work in the scientific advice team, Pilar is involved in scientific advice projects and parallel scientific advice with other health technology assessment and regulatory agencies. She also participates in business development activities, with a particular focus on cell and gene therapies and highly specialised technologies. Pilar joined NICE in 2012 and worked in the technology appraisals and highly specialised technologies programmes until 2016, when she became part of the scientific advice team.

Pilar holds a degree in business administration and management from the University of La Laguna (Spain) and an MSc in Health Economics, Policy and Law with specialisation in health economics from the Erasmus University of Rotterdam (the Netherlands). Before joining NICE, Pilar worked as a researcher in one of the Spanish regional health technology assessment units (SESCS, Canary Islands) conducting systematic reviews and economic evaluations for the Spanish Healthcare System. She is currently on the board of directors for the Spanish Health Economics Association (AES).

Neil Hewitt, senior scientific adviser (health economics)

Neil is involved in a range of scientific advice projects. His primary role is to critically review decision analytic models within the Preliminary Independent Model Advice (PRIMA) service, before they are submitted to NICE. Neil also contributes as a topic lead on other scientific advice projects and delivers educational seminars.

Previously, Neil worked as an analyst and senior analyst in the Medical Technologies Evaluation Programme, Commissioning Support Programme and Technology Appraisals Programme at NICE. He holds an MSc in Health Economics from the University of York and a PhD in Health Economics, specialising in panel data econometrics, from the University of Nottingham.

François Maignen, principal scientific adviser

François is a pharmacist and statistician.

He holds a Doctorate in Pharmacy, an MSc in Molecular Pharmacochemistry, a Postgraduate Diploma in Hospital Pharmacy and Public Health (Université René Descartes, Paris) and a MSc in Applied Statistics (University of London).

Dr Iordanis Sidiropoulos, principal scientific adviser

Iordanis is involved in a range of scientific advice projects, parallel scientific advice procedures with other health technology assessment and regulatory agencies as well as in delivery of educational seminars.

Iordanis graduated in medicine and completed his specialty training in otolaryngology. He has practised as a clinician in the NHS as well as in Greece and Denmark.

Iordanis holds a BSc in Political Science (University of Thessaloniki) and has postgraduate studies in health economics and clinical trials (London School of Economics and London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine). He has worked for the European Medicines Agency and in the Technology Appraisals Programme at NICE.

Ben Purchase, scientific adviser (health economics)

Ben is involved in a range of scientific advice projects. His primary role is to critically review decision analytic models within the Preliminary Independent Model Advice (PRIMA) service, before they are submitted to NICE. Ben also contributes as a technical lead on other scientific advice projects as well as delivering on educational seminars.

Previously, Ben worked as a health economist for the National Guideline Alliance, a NICE clinical guideline developer, based within the Royal College of Obstetricians and Gynaecologists. Ben holds a joint MSc in Health Economics, specialising in economic evaluation from the Erasmus University (Netherlands), and global health from the University of Bologna (Italy).

Hugh Mcguire, senior scientific adviser

Hugh is a senior scientific adviser within the NICE International and NICE scientific advice team. He leads technically on the NICE International services, with specialist knowledge of guideline development.

Hugh contributes to NICE International's strategic objectives and the delivery of different international engagements. He does this through workshops, educational seminars, and international consultancy projects. He has extensive experience in delivering these services at both a national and international level.

Hugh holds an MSc in Health Psychology from the University of Westminster. Before joining NICE, he worked in various roles in guideline development and for Cochrane.

Deborah Lee, senior project manager

Deborah is the senior project manager in the scientific advice team and for NICE International. She leads on the management of knowledge transfer and consultancy activities.

Deborah is the primary contact for national and international organisations interested in engaging with NICE, learning more about our processes, methodology and support services. She works closely with stakeholders and business partners to publicise our offering and develop new services and initiatives at a national and international level. She led on the development of the award winning META Tool and continues to support its ongoing development, alongside supporting the management of a variety of services within scientific advice.

Previously, Deborah worked in various NHS public health roles, leading on a number of public health research, audit and service development projects. She has an honours degree in psychology, a Postgraduate Diploma in Psychological Research methods and holds a Postgraduate Certificate in Public Health.

Philippa Wood, project manager

Philippa is responsible for planning and coordinating the delivery of our project services and plays a key role in liaising with external clients and stakeholders.

Before joining the team, Philippa worked within the Clinical Audit Programme at NICE where she provided project support to the implementation team. Philippa holds an honours degree in English and Spanish from the University of Manchester.

Toni Gasse, project manager

Toni is responsible for focusing on the project planning, monitoring and reporting of the artificial intelligence multi-agency advice service, which is a collaboration between regulatory partners.

Toni plays a key role in maintaining effective working relationships with key system partners and both internal and external stakeholders.

Previously, Toni worked as an assistant project manager and coordinator in scientific advice and had various planning, coordination and operational roles in the NHS and private sector. Toni has an honours degree in Marketing and Design from the University of Teesside.

Laura Worthington, project manager

Laura is responsible for planning and coordinating the delivery of our project services. She plays a key role in liaising with external clients and stakeholders. She's also involved with the management and development of the META Tool.

Laura has an honours degree in Biomedical Science from Manchester Metropolitan University. Before joining the team Laura worked in the Accelerated Access Collaborative (AAC) Secretariat, where she coordinated our activities as a key partner organisation of the AAC. She has previously worked in the NICE quality standards team and Cancer Drugs Fund team.

Richard Chivers, operations manager

Richard is responsible for scientific advice planning and operations. This includes overseeing the management of all advice services, using continuous improvement to refine our approach, and working closely with stakeholders and business partners to develop new policies, processes and services.

Richard has played a key role in designing many of the services used in scientific advice both at NICE and in parallel services with other agencies.

Richard is qualified to postgraduate level and has worked as head of business development for the NHS Transformation Unit, where he was responsible for the growth and diversification of the business, commodification of new and existing services and raising awareness of the organisation within the health and care sector.

Ian Wall, assistant project manager

Ian is responsible for planning and coordinating the delivery of our project services. He plays a key role in liasing with external clients and stakeholders. He's also involved with the development of coordination systems.

Before joining the team Ian worked in the NICE Centre for Guidelines, where he managed the development of public health guidelines. He's previously worked in NICE's web team and science policy and research team.

Harry Atkins, assistant project manager

Harry is responsible for delivering and planning scientific advice projects. He plays a key role in liaising with external clients and stakeholders. Harry also works within the NICE International team to deliver engagements for the global healthcare community.

Harry has an honours degree in Business Management from the University of Kent and an MBA from the Royal Docks Business School, UEL. Before joining NICE, he worked as an HR consultant in a global business advisory firm.

Mira Patel, assistant project manager

Mira is responsible for planning and coordinating the delivery of scientific advice projects. She plays a key role in liaising with external clients and stakeholders and is also involved with the management and development of the META Tool.

Mira holds a BSc honours degree in Business Management from Aston University. After spending over 2 years in the print management industry as an Account Manager, Mira moved to Australia where she took up post with the Medical Council of New South Wales. On her return to the UK, Mira joined the Technology Appraisals team at NICE, where she coordinated large scale committee meetings.

Hannah Walker, project coordinator

Hannah is responsible for providing administrative support to the project managers and technical members of the scientific advice team. She plays a key role in expert management.

Before joining NICE, Hannah held various administrative and coordinator roles within the NHS. Most recently, she was a multidisciplinary team coordinator and provided project support for Cancer Optimal Pathway implementation.

Hannah holds a BSc Honours degree in Zoology from the University of Manchester.

Catherine Kural, project coordinator

Catherine is responsible for providing administrative support to the project managers and technical members of the team.

Before joining NICE, Catherine held various administrative roles within the NHS. Most recently, she was a senior administrator for NHS Cheshire CCG where she provided project support to the continuing healthcare department.

Catherine holds a BSc Honours degree in Languages from the University of Manchester.

Iliana Kostarigka, project coordinator

Iliana coordinates and supports our portfolio of projects. She plays a key role in maintaining effective working relationships with external stakeholders and clients, particularly external clinical and health economic experts.

Before joining NICE, Iliana held various project support and coordinator roles in the higher education sector. She holds a Bachelor's degree in Political Science and History from the Panteion University of Athens, Greece, and an MSc in Business Management from the University of Manchester.

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