Improve the quality of care delivered and encourage the adoption of cost-effective innovation 

NICE Fellows are experienced leaders in the field of health and social care. They are NICE ambassadors at a regional and national level and among their professional groups and peers.

NICE Fellows build networks of influential professionals who support NICE in the implementation of its guidance.

What's involved?

As a NICE Fellow your role is to:

  • act as a UK-wide NICE ambassador for 3 years among your professional groups and peers
  • support and maintain the connection between NICE and health and social care experts
  • access expertise across our departments through a series of workshops
  • engage with senior staff at NICE and in the health and social care sector
  • help us improve and promote the quality of health and social care
  • develop new ways of working in health and social care.

Read our interview with NICE Fellow Elizabeth Robb

How does it work?

You'll be supported in your role through a series of workshops and access to a mentor. The Fellowship also facilitates access to the expertise of the NICE teams.

You'll be expected to devote on average approximately 7.5 hours per month to Fellowship activities. Fellowships are unpaid and you must agree your application with your employer. NICE will, however, meet all reasonable expenses (e.g. travel, accommodation) incurred in the course of carrying out Fellowship activities.

Would I be suitable?

NICE Fellowships are suited to roles such as:

  • medical and clinical directors
  • directors of nursing
  • heads of midwifery
  • directors of finance
  • heads of services for the allied health professions
  • directors/heads of adults and children’s services
  • directors of provider services in social care

This year we are also looking for applications from lay members on NICE’s committees or from influential individuals working in the charitable and voluntary sector.

We aim to recruit 10 senior healthcare leaders a year.

Access to information

Scholars have access to the NICE Fellows and Scholars Zone  (login details are required)

Read about Victoria Elliot's experience of being a NICE Fellow

2017-20 NICE Fellows

Carol McCrum

Consultant Physiotherapist in Musculoskeletal Medicine

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Carol McCrum is a Consultant Physiotherapist at East Sussex Healthcare NHS Trust and Visiting Research Fellow at University of Brighton. She works clinically within the multidisciplinary teams in rheumatology and orthopaedic outpatient services at the Trust and with the musculoskeletal physiotherapy team. Carol completed her doctorate in 2011 and is active in clinical research and supervision.

Carol was a member of the guideline development committee for the recently published NICE guidance on spondyloarthritis in over 16’s: diagnosis and management. This group of inflammatory conditions can be challenging to diagnose and to date the average time from symptom onset to diagnosis has been around 8-9 years, despite significant advances in imaging and treatment.

In her role as a NICE Fellow, Carol aims to help raise awareness and support the implementation of the NICE Guidelines on spondyloarthritis using strategies including professional education events, clinical and professional networks, and presentation and publication strategies. This also includes raising awareness of the implementation support tools and services we provide to help with guideline implementation in healthcare organisations. Carol is also keen to help improve understanding of how guidance is developed, raise awareness of the work of NICE and its resources, foster engagement in its activities and help support the contributions to evidence development and evidence informed practice through the research recommendations

Erika Damato

Consultant Medical Ophthalmologist, Birmingham and Midland Eye Centre

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Erika Damato specializes in uveitis and inflammatory eye disease and medical retina and also works in the National Centre of Excellence for Bechet’s disease.

Erika trained in general medicine in the South West before embarking on a career in medical ophthalmology at Bristol eye hospital. She then travelled to New Zealand where she worked with the Fred Hollows foundation and undertook a clinical research fellowship in diabetic retinopathy in the Pacific. The aim of the fellowship was to report the severity and significance of diabetic eye disease in this part of the world.

In her role as a NICE fellow, Erika aims to improve the care of patients with uveitis and inflammatory eye disease by developing guidelines and auditable pathways for such patients and also by implementing existing NICE guidance into current practice. Patients with medical eye problems often have significant systemic associations and co-morbidities, whose care is often delivered by a multidisciplinary team. Delivery of such care may vary between different institutions. Erika aims to use this opportunity to work together with NICE and help to standardize the care of patients with sight threatening ocular inflammatory conditions irrespective of where they live in the UK.

Geeta Kumar

Consultant obstetrician & gynaecologist and clinical director at Wrexham Maelor hospital

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Geeta Kumar qualified in India. After doing her masters in Obstetrics and Gynaecology, she moved to the UK in 1995. She completed a 7 year UK speciality training programme from Manchester deanery and started her first consultant post in Manchester in 2003 before moving to North Wales. Her special interests include menstrual disorders, menopause, gynaecological ultrasound, medical education and medical leadership. She completed a PG certificate in clinical leadership with distinction in 2015 and is currently undertaking a senior clinical leadership programme with King’s fund, London.

As the current chair of Royal College of Obstetricians and Gynaecologists’ Patient information committee, she leads a multi-professional team working towards improving patient and public education and empowerment. As a member of the NICE Quality Standards Advisory Committee for over 4 years, she has contributed towards development of high quality evidence-based health care standards.

Geeta is passionate about the role of service users and carers in decision-making. As a NICE fellow she hopes to become a true ambassador and champion for NICE, trying to ensure education on active patient involvement as well as helping implement an evidence-based approach to healthcare amidst the significant challenges currently faced by the NHS.

Jim Thomas

Programme Head for workforce innovation and redesign at Skills for Care

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Jim Thomas was Cambridgeshire County Council’s and Cambridgeshire Health Authorities Joint Training organiser in the 1990s, running a broad programme of integrated learning and development programme. In 2000 he led the development of integrated teams across Cambridgeshire's adult social care and health services. He also worked for the Valuing People Support Team as their expert advisor on workforce development.

Since joining Skills for Care in 2007 he has led a range of national programmes of workforce Innovation. These include developing a framework for workforce redesign, with the principles of workforce integration, in partnership with ADASS, LGA, NHS employers, TLAP and Skills for Health. His current programme includes workforce commissioning, commissioning for wellbeing qualifications, skills led approaches to community development, transforming care, digital champions and looking at the shared strategic learning and development issues for housing and social care.

He will spend his time as a NICE fellow exploring the links between NICE’s work programme and the strategic and operational workforce requirements for adult social care working. He is looking to find ways to use both the work of NICE and Skills for Care across all aspects of adult social care workforce development.

Joanna Williams

Associate Director of Social Care for Torbay and South Devon

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Joanna Williams undertook her Masters qualification in Social Work at the University of Leicester. During her social work career she has worked with a wide variety of different people who use social care services, staff in front line, senior management, strategic and commissioning roles. She also worked as a paid carer for several years in her early career. Her more senior roles include working as the Head of Learning Disabilities in a London Borough and latterly as the Associate Director of Social Care for Torbay and South Devon NHS Foundation Trust. This role gives her responsibility for all social work provision, adult safeguarding Deprivation of Liberty and a range of other social care services for a pioneering integrated care organisation.

Joanna has a special interest in ensuring that people and communities are in control of services and that they hold the power to control their own lives. Joanna hopes to use her time as a NICE Fellow to practically support the availability of high quality and safe health and social care in the community. She also hopes to use her extensive experience in operational and strategic social care to strengthen NICE’s voice and promote its role in ensuring choice of high quality social care provision that the people who rely on it deserve.

Naomi McVey

North West Allied Health Professions (AHP) Workforce Lead at Health Education England

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Naomi McVey is responsible for leading the AHP network across the North West and for providing workforce intelligence and professional advice on the 13 allied health professions, with a particular focus on workforce transformation. Naomi has previously worked at NICE, in roles that supported the implementation of NICE guidance and quality standards.

As a physiotherapist Naomi is an active member of the Chartered Society of Physiotherapy, having served on their council and advisory committees. Naomi is also one of the co-founders of the @physiotalk and @WeAHPs twitter communities and has extensive experience of leading digital networks, and their role in helping healthcare professionals and service-users to share and discuss good practice.

Naomi will use her time as a fellow to promote the range and relevance of NICE’s work to AHPs and services across the North West and nationally. She aims to increase awareness of the NICE guideline development process, and how AHPs and other healthcare professionals can get involved and use the breath of NICE’s work to help them improve and transform health and care services.

Natasha Sloman

Head of Hospital Inspection at South East Region, CQC

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Natasha Sloman is a social worker and approved mental health professional (AMHP). She has worked in NHS mental health services for almost 20 years. Her early years were spent working in central London with people who were sleeping rough and had long term mental health conditions. She has managed assertive outreach and AMHP services and was head of social work and social care at Camden and Islington Foundation Trust.

She now works for the Care Quality Commission as a head of hospital inspection for mental health, learning disability and substance misuse for the South East of England. Natasha is passionate about the place of social care in health settings and the importance of providing integrated services. She is driven by the desire for social justice and putting people who use services and frontline staff in control.

Opinder Sahota

Professor in Ortho-Geriatric Medicine & Consultant Physician, QMC, Nottingham University Hospitals NHS Trust.

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Opinder has been and is currently involved in a number of NICE guidelines, including the NICE Falls Quality Standards and NICE Acute Medicine Clinical Guideline and hopes to use this experience during the fellowship.

He is a full time NHS physician, lead clinician in Ortho-Geriatric Medicine Nottingham, with a research interest in vitamin D, muscle function and fractures.

Tony Sharples

Public Health Specialist at Cheshire West and Chester Council

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Tony started his career as the lead analyst for the North West Public Health Observatory. He contributed to the development of public health intelligence tools at a regional and national level but soon turned his attention to other aspects of public health and health care. He was a founder member of the Cheshire and Merseyside Public Health Collaborative (ChaMPs), sitting on the steering group for the network and setting up the Information and Knowledge Management Group. He is currently a member of the Commissioning Leads Group looking at improving the effectiveness and efficiency of public health commissioning across the sub-region.

Tony studied for a degree in Health and Community Studies and later was awarded a Ph.D. in Epidemiology and Prognostic Markers from The University of Liverpool in 2002. He completed the National NHS Leadership Scheme in 2009. Tony is passionate about using research and evidence to improve the quality of health and social care services for local populations. He has worked predominantly in the NHS and academic settings and more recently in Local Authorities.

He has extensive experience of public health intelligence and over his career has held a range of subject specific portfolios, including: drugs and alcohol, older people, sexual health, cancer, CVD, suicide prevention, falls prevention and safeguarding. He has significant experience of strategy development, service re-design, pathway development and partnership working.


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2016-19 NICE Fellows

Catherine Williams

Lay representative in maternity

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Catherine is an experienced lay representative in maternity. A microbiology graduate – formerly a property lawyer and Law Society policy adviser – her maternity work began when she joined an NHS Maternity Services Liaison Committee (MSLC) as a service user member in 2004 – working with commissioners, other service users, midwives, and doctors to monitor and improve services. Her work with MSLCs has included initiating and developing community outreach and involving women in service co-design. Catherine qualified as an NCT Antenatal Practitioner in 2012. She currently works for a local Healthwatch, the statutory ‘consumer champion’ for health and social care.

Catherine was a lay member of the GDG for NICE CG190 Intrapartum Care – care of healthy women and their babies during childbirth. She serves on a number of maternity working groups including: Reading, Wokingham & West Berks MSLC, which she chaired for three years; NHS Berkshire West Maternity Steering Group; NCT Research Advisory Group; and, as Vice Chair, UKmidSS Steering Group (NPEU). Catherine tweets about evidence and maternity matters as @BerksMaternity and blogs at her Birth & Biology wordpress blog.

Catherine will use her time as a fellow to promote wider understanding of the value of NICE process, and the need for lay people and clinicians alike to be involved, whether as GDG members or as stakeholders. She also has a strong interest in supporting evidence informed decision making by service users. She will continue to maintain her strong links with her multidisciplinary MSLC, NCT-Professional/Research, and #MatExp networks.

Debra Adams

Head of IPC; NHS Improvement (Midlands and East)

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Dr. Debra Adams undertook her Registered Nurse training in Birmingham, UK. During her career she has gained extensive experience in infection prevention and control (IPC) and research co-ordination. She has further developed her academic portfolio by completing her PhD (Pharmacy; Aston University, Birmingham. UK). Her thesis examined three key areas of scientific interest associated with both pharma and device related aspects of microbiology.

Debra plans to spend her time as a NICE Fellow facilitating the implementation of the evidence based NICE Quality Guidelines and Standards associated with IPC across the health care system (PH36, CG139, CG74, QS61, QS113). She is particularly interested in healthcare worker safety associated with sharps injuries.

Dee Christie

Occupational Therapist (retired)

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Dee trained as an Occupational Therapist (Dip OT, CMS, MA Health Studies) qualifying in 1974. She has worked for the NHS in neuro-rehabilitation and has spent 35 years in local government social care.

In 1987 Dee was appointed as Head of Service with West Sussex County Council to set up a countywide OT Service. During that time Dee managed a portfolio of rehabilitation and support services for people with disabilities including OT. She developing professional standards and practice, introduced the support worker role for OTs, developed specialist services for children and also for people with sensory impairments. Latterly she managed the development of reablement services, a ‘first point of contact‘ for all people in need of adult social care and initiated an integrated rehabilitation strategy with the NHS.

Dee has been active for the College of Occupational Therapists (COT), serving on a number of regional committees and boards throughout her career. In 2004 she was elected to the COT Council, the board of directors and trustees for the COT, as Member for Social Care. In 2006 she elected was Chairman of Council for the COT for 3 years.

Dee retired in 2014 but continues her commitment through professional activities with the COT Conference Committee and as a CQC Specialist Advisor. In February 2015 Dee was appointed to Chair a NICE National Guideline Committee on Intermediate Care including Reablement. As a NICE fellow she is looking forward to promoting the work of NICE and importance of evidence based practice.

Helen Bromley

Consultant in Public Health

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Helen started her career in nursing but soon turned her attention to the broader area of public health. She studied for a degree in geography and a master’s degree in geography and population health. Helen was awarded her PhD (Geography and Social Medicine) in 1998 from the University of Bristol and her Master of Public Health degree from The University of Liverpool in 2007.

Helen is passionate about using research and evidence to improve the quality of health and social care services for local populations. She has worked predominantly in NHS and academic settings, both in the UK and overseas, including Canada, New Zealand, China, Mexico, India, Syria and many European countries.

She has extensive experience of developing participatory and qualitative approaches in health research, as well as training others to undertake such research. Currently, Helen is a Consultant in Public Health at Cheshire West and Chester Council and a visiting professor at the University of Chester.

Julian Hamilton-Shield

Professor of Diabetes and Metabolic Endocrinology

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Julian Hamilton-Shield is a Professor of Diabetes and Metabolic Endocrinology at the University of Bristol (UK). He undertook his clinical training in Bristol and the Hospitals for Sick Children, London.

He has been an honorary consultant paediatrician at Bristol Royal Hospital for Children since 1997. He is currently the deputy director of a National Institute for Health Research, Biomedical Research Unit in Nutrition at Bristol researching ‘optimising nutrition in children with chronic disease to improve health outcomes’ and has research interests in the causes and treatment of all forms of childhood diabetes, obesity and later cardiovascular risk.

He hopes to use his fellowship to work in his areas of speciality interest: diabetes, obesity and chronic disease in childhood and more broadly to work with NICE medical device evaluation. Having a chronic renal condition himself, he also hopes to use this experience in the area of patient involvement in NICE decision making.

Mark Tighe

Consultant paediatrician

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Mark Tighe is a consultant paediatrician at Poole Hospital. His special interests include paediatric gastroenterology, and oncology, and he was part of the NICE guideline on gastro-oesophageal reflux in children. He’s also an Associate Editor of Archives of Disease in Childhood, and leads the paediatric research program at Poole Hospital.

Richard Seal

Chief Pharmacist – NHS Trust Development Authority

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Registered pharmacist, Richard Seal MSc FRPharmS FFRPS is passionate about helping people to make the most of their medicines and enabling them to become more involved in making decisions and managing their own care. During his career, he has worked in a wide variety of operational and national NHS pharmacy roles and in 2014 was made a fellow of the Royal Pharmaceutical Society.

Sarah Fishburn

Lay healthcare reviewer

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Sarah has a keen interest in all aspects of healthcare and has developed an expertise and understanding of how women and families using maternity services experience healthcare. She has been a lay member on a number of NICE guideline development groups for the Intrapartum Care Update and Intrapartum Care for High Risk Women as well as Pregnancy with Complex Social Factors. She is also a member of Rapid Update Committee A and was a member of the guideline review panel, as well as developing training tools for systematic reviewing and health economics. She originally qualified as a physiotherapist and specialised in acquired neurological conditions, but is not currently practising.

She chairs the Pelvic Partnership support group for women with pelvic girdle pain related to pregnancy and is a lay reviewer with the local supervising authority, Mott MacDonald, the Nursing & Midwifery Council and the Royal College of Obstetricians and Gynaecologists (RCOG).

As one of the first lay fellows at NICE she will promote NICE guidance within the NHS and the voluntary sectors. As an ambassador for NICE, she will encourage the involvement of people using health services in both accessing and implementing guidance, in order to improve the quality of care.

Sarah Silverton

Patient & Public Experience Lead

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Sarah graduated from the Florence Nightingale School of Nursing & Midwifery, Kings College London and has nearly twenty years of practical experience working in hospital and community environments as a mental health nurse in acute and crisis services. For the past four years she has been the Patient & Public Experience Lead at Dorset County Hospital NHS Foundation Trust and recently completed an MSc with the NHS Leadership Academy.

Sarah was a NICE scholar 2013-14 and a finalist in the NICE Shared Learning Awards 2015. As a scholar she spent her time focusing on complaints and the patient experience of the NHS complaints process. She used every complaint as a learning opportunity to support healthcare staff in improving patient experience. Using the NICE guideline and accompanying quality standard on patient experience, complaints were categorised and themed to identify areas of poor practice and solutions to improving care.

Sarah will take the opportunities offered as a NICE fellow to continue to build on the work she did as a scholar and share this with other healthcare organisations. She also intends collaborating with the mental health and community sector using the NICE guideline and accompanying quality standard on patient experience in mental health services to improve the experience of patients with mental health problems in the acute sector.

Saskia Ritchie

Chief Executive of Cheshire Without Abuse

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Saskia Ritchie has 22 year's experience working in the domestic abuse sector and is currently the Chief Executive of Cheshire Without Abuse (CWA). This charity supports men, women and children who suffer from domestic abuse. The charity has been transformed under her leadership from a failing organisation to being one of the most innovative and effective organisations in the domestic abuse sector in the country.

This has been achieved by her drive for excellence and core skills being:

  • influencing and negotiating, change management, organisation management
  • leadership
  • strategic planning
  • finance modelling
  • budget management

together with the understanding of social, political and policy landscape to influence practice and policy to achieve integration of domestic abuse into the wider health and social care agendas and services.

In 2015, CWA was a Regional Winner of the Lloyds Bank Foundation – Charity Achievement Awards.

Saskia is passionate about improving services for people who have experienced domestic abuse and shifting provision from crisis intervention to early help and prevention. She is currently studying for a PhD in Criminology and Social Work, to add to her Research Masters – ‘Working with perpetrators of domestic abuse’ (Ruskin College, Oxford). In addition she is also an active board member of Body Positive Cheshire.


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2015-18 NICE Fellows

Enid Povey

Head of Clinical Assurance, Digital Assessment Service

NHS Choices within the Health and Social Care Information Centre (HSCIC)

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Enid spent over 15 years with NHS Direct in roles that included Education lead and Nurse Consultant. Her final role was as Associate Director for Clinical Information and Development where she was responsible for the development of systems and information to support Clinicians, Non-clinicians and the public. She has worked on both NICE and DH guideline development groups ensuring remote assessment is at the heart of care. She now heads the Digital service at NHS Choices which provides evidenced based self-assessment tools online that support patient care and the wider health economy.

She will spend her time as a NICE Fellow focusing on remote assessment, both ensuring its consideration within published guidance but also, through a communication strategy, influencing providers to raise the profile of evidence based care to ensure consistency and best practice across the services.

Gail Sowden

Consultant Physiotherapist

Staffordshire and Stoke-on-Trent NHS Partnership Trust

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Gail is the Allied Health Professions lead for pain and vocational rehabilitation across Staffordshire and Stoke-on-Trent NHS Partnership Trust. She also works in a clinical trials unit at Keele University, where she is involved in world-leading musculoskeletal research, is a co-applicant on three international research collaborations and publishes in peer reviewed journals.

As a NICE Fellow, Gail will utilise the expertise, networks, tools and resources that have been developed through her AHSN work to support implementation of the ‘Management of Non Specific Low Back Pain and Sciatica Guidelines’ (2016). She aims to increase awareness of the NICE guideline development process, the implementation support that NICE provide and NICE’s non-guideline related work, and to assist NICE in their engagement strategy.

Jane Viner

Director of Nursing, Professional Practice and People’s Experience

South Devon Healthcare NHS Foundation Trust

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Jane qualified as a registered nurse with an MSc Nursing and an MA Education. Her most recent posts are Executive Director for a Health and Social Care provider and currently as Executive Director within an acute provider with Pioneer status. Her portfolio includes quality and safety, clinical risk, clinical governance, safeguarding, infection control, and user experience. Jane is currently working with partners to develop an integrated health and social care system that brings together providers, commissioners and the public to design and deliver a joined up health and social care strategy with a public health and ill-health prevention focus.

As a NICE fellow, she plans to continue to work across the health and social care system to implement the NICE quality standard QS15, Patient Experience in Adult NHS Services. She will have a specific focus on application of the standard to independent sector provider partners and within non-bed based settings. The outcome is development of a single experience assessment tool with a common set of metrics that can be applied across the whole health and social care system.

Jeremy Rodrigues

Academic Clinical Fellow in Plastic Surgery

University of Oxford & Health Education Thames Valley

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Jeremy qualified from The University of Edinburgh with a BSc with first class Honours in Experimental Pathology, MBChB with Honours, and an MSc with Distinction in Surgical Sciences. The main subject of his research is clinical outcome assessment in hand surgery, and he is currently finalising a PhD thesis related to this topic. Jeremy has previously held a NICE Scholarship, during which he developed an interest in the incorporation of clinical evidence into surgical practice. Jeremy’s fellowship will work on several projects, including validation of outcome measures, comparative study design and clinical guideline development in hand surgery.

Jo Aldridge

Professor of Social Policy and Criminology

Department of Social Sciences, Loughborough University

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Jo is Professor of Social Policy and Criminology at Loughborough University. She is also director of the Young Carers Research Group (YCRG), which is known both nationally and internationally for its pioneering research on young carers and their families. Jo also works with a range of vulnerable or marginalized groups, including people with mental health problems, people with learning difficulties and unsupported women victims of domestic violence. She has developed creative, participatory methods of working more inclusively with vulnerable or marginalized people who are often excluded from research that uses conventional methods of engagement. Jo’s most recent publication, Participatory Research: Working with Vulnerable Groups in Research and Practice, draws together her extensive experience of working with vulnerable, socially excluded people in research and practice settings. Jo has also published widely in the fields of mental health, children’s rights, disability rights and domestic violence and she has also written practice guidance for health and social care professionals on parental mental health and child welfare both in the UK, for the Scottish Government and in Australia where she works closely with the national Children of Parents with Mental Illness (COPMI) network.

Julia Terry

Senior Lecturer in Mental Health Nursing

Swansea University

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Julia is a Senior Lecturer in Mental Health Nursing at Swansea University where she leads the Mental Health team in the Department of Nursing in the College of Human & Health Sciences, and teaches on pre and post registration programmes. Her specialist areas are child & adolescent mental health and mental health promotion. Julia leads the College’s service user and carer involvement group for health care professional programmes, ensuring the service user and carer perspective becomes a key focus in student learning. She is a member of the All Wales Senior Nurse Advisory Group for Mental Health, Mental Health Nurse Academics UK, and the All Wales Pre-Registration Nursing and Midwifery Group.

Julia’s focus for the NICE Fellowship will include a number of strands. She will be promoting the NICE student champion role among university students, to encourage students to increase their knowledge about evidence based practice. She will drive health improvement by exploring current teaching and learning material on mental health conditions, to promote the work of NICE in terms of best evidence. Julia will also be promoting patient and public involvement with NICE.

Peter Jenks

Consultant in Microbiology and Director of Infection Prevention and Control.

Department of Microbiology, Plymouth Hospitals NHS Trust.

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Peter Jenks was appointed as a Consultant Microbiologist in Plymouth in 2004 and shortly afterwards became the Director of Infection Prevention and Control. He was a member of the Topic Expert Group (TEG) that produced the Quality Improvement Guide for the Prevention and Control of Healthcare-associated Infections, Chair of the TEG that produced Quality Standard 49 on Surgical Site Infection and a member of the Quality Standards Advisory Committee that published Quality Standard 61 on Infection Prevention and Control in April 2014. He was elected as a member of Council of the Healthcare Infection Society (HIS) in 2008 and was the Chair of the HIS Scientific Development Committee between 2010 and 2013.

Peter is interested in the diagnosis, management and prevention of infection, as well as antimicrobial resistance and stewardship. His specialist areas include the surveillance and prevention of surgical site infection, as well as the prevention and control of infections due to multi-drug resistant micro-organisms, including meticillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA), Clostridium difficile and carbapenemase-resistant Enterobacteriaceae. More recently, he has been working on methods to assess the economic impact of healthcare-associated infections and how this allows the cost-benefit analysis of preventative interventions. In this Fellowship, Peter intends to continue to promote evidence-based improvements in the quality of infection prevention control, infection management and antimicrobial resistance across the health and care system. He is particularly interested in developing strategies to encourage and support others to demonstrate the local economic benefits that follow guideline implementation, so providing objective financial evidence for the benefits of adopting of quality improvement strategies.

Rachel Pryke

General practitioner

Winyates Health Centre, Redditch, Worcestershire

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Rachel has a special interest in obesity, having written several books and many e-learning resources on obesity and child obesity. She has been a member of several high-profile obesity committees, including the Academy of Medical Royal Colleges Obesity Steering Group, which produced the ‘Measuring Up: The medical profession’s prescription to the obesity crisis’ report, and the RCP Obesity Working Party, which resulted in the “Action on obesity: comprehensive care for all” report, addressing multidisciplinary team development of obesity services (January 2013). She has been GP representative on the Lancet Commission into liver disease in the UK, published in November 2014. She established and has chaired the RCGP Nutrition Group since 2013. She is currently engaged in developing a web-based self-help parenting programme to support families highlighted by the National Child Measuring Programme.

These varied projects have generated many questions about how evidence-based medicine can translate across the diverse workforce of primary care and Rachel is particularly interested in development of translational tools to make evidence-based medicine more easily accessible, particularly at the point of decision making. Her role as NICE Fellow will be to explore how this process can evolve, making sure that the specific needs of the evidence users, i.e. both clinician and patient, are kept firmly in sight.

Rob Stenner

Consultant Physiotherapist

Somerset Partnership NHS Foundation Trust

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Rob specialised in musculoskeletal medicine and has combined work in the NHS with working in professional sport. Robs interest and expertise focuses on the management of spinal problems, and in his clinical role he runs spinal assessment clinics in a community setting. He has a specific interest in improving the quality of health care delivery focusing on the patient experience, and the extent to which patients are involved in decisions regarding their care as part of a patient-centred approach. He is a member of the Option Grid Collaborative, and has been involved as an editor in developing an Option Grid for the management of sciatica.

Rob completed his MSc in Pain Management at Leicester University in 2004 and his PhD at the University of the West of England in 2014 which explored how shared decision making and patient partnership are addressed by physiotherapists in the process of exercise prescription for patients with chronic low back pain. He will spend his time as a NICE Fellow developing his interest in patient experience (CG138) and shared decision making, and integrating this with the revised NICE Low Back Pain (LBP) guidelines (CG88). He will explore if the collaborative development of clinical guidelines and patient decision aids can help support the implementation of the revised NICE LBP guidelines to benefit both professionals and patients so that care is tailored to the individual preference of patients.

Vimal Sriram

Learning and Improvement Fellow


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Vimal operates within the Collaborative Learning and Partnerships Theme of NIHR CLAHRC NWL. His work focuses on building capacity and capability of clinical, non-clinical and academic staff in the use of the CLAHRC NWL systematic approach for quality improvement. Vimal read for his MSc in Evidence Based Healthcare at Kellogg College, University of Oxford, and is also a registered Occupational Therapist with over 13 years of experience working in orthopaedics, trauma and neuro-rehab within acute and community care settings. In his professional career, he has been a clinician, senior manager and commissioner. He is a member of the London clinical senate forum and the strategic clinical network for dementia. Vimal supports NICE as an Accreditation, Quality and Productivity external adviser. He is a member of the London Allied Health Professions Advisory Group and a clinical and professional specialist advisor for the Care Quality Commission.

The focus of his fellowship will be on using NICE guidance and guidelines to inform transition between stages of quality improvement projects and ensure sustainability and long term success of these projects. He will act as an ambassador for NICE with clinical, academic, non-clinical and industry to ensure that they have a sound understanding of NICE. Vimal will focus on efforts that support professional development, better care and bridging the gap between good evidence and practice mainly with the allied health professions.


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2014-17 NICE Fellows

Amina Aitsi-Selmi

Senior Specialist Registrar in Public Health, London

Public Health Department, Department of Health

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Dr Amina Aitsi-Selmi has been committed to a career in public health since medical school. She studied Social Anthropology with a placement exploring the Cuban public health system for her elective. After completing MRCP a European/NHS SHO exchange and a humanitarian mission with Médecins Sans Frontières in South Sudan, she became a NIHR Fellow in Public Health and completed a PhD in epidemiology at UCL supervised by Professor Sir Michael Marmot and funded through a Wellcome Trust fellowship. Her research focused on the social epidemiology of female obesity in lower-income countries and she has published on the role of education and wealth in China, Egypt, Brazil, India and other emerging economies.

On starting the NICE fellowship she was a specialist adviser in public health to the Department of Health to the team delivering on the Secretary of State's Reducing Avoidable Mortality Programme team and developed a consensus framework for system-wide action on comorbidities, co-produced by DH/NHS/PHE and third sector partners.

As a NICE Fellow she plans to continue working across the health and care system as a public health practitioner and academic to build the evidence-base necessary for cost-effective and equitable delivery of public health programmes at local level, creating links between national and local level public health players. She is also interested in future forecasting epidemiological trends of non-communicable diseases and their impact on society and believes NICE is an ideal institution for continuing to develop and promote evidence-based, population level approaches to improving health, preventing disease and reducing inequalities.

Rachel Brown

General Practitioner

Montpelier Health Centre

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Rachel had been a GP partner in a busy Bristol inner city practice for 18 years.

She believes in striving for clinical excellence for all patients, but also treating patients with compassion, being a listening ear, and helping them with their needs whether they be financial, housing, emotional, physical or psychological in nature. This can lead to GPs treading a difficult path between best practice and the needs of the patient. This is an area that would benefit from some work, looking at how GPs can be enabled to achieve clinical excellence within their consulting room.

She has been very involved in community gynaecology pathways and strategies for many years working with Primary Care Trusts and more recently with the Clinical Commissioning Group. She currently runs a gynaecology advice and guidance service for local GPs. She is also a trustee for a local charity; Off the Record, providing free confidential counselling for 12-25y olds.

Sally Coomber

Consultant Occupational Physician

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Dr Sally Coomber was appointed Clinical Lead for Accreditation of Occupational Health (OH) services at the Faculty of Occupational Medicine in 2011. In 2010 she completed the Senior Clinical Leadership Programme in the East of England. Having left the NHS she joined Public Health England in January 2014 as their first Consultant Occupational Physician, with the challenge of introducing high quality OH in a new and diverse PH organisation with 5300 staff on 115 sites across the UK. Having spent many years working with the NHS, county council, fire and police services Sally is now working in a more strategic role, profiling hazard and risks of laboratory work with infectious diseases, including high containment facilities and travel to high-risk areas.

Her clinical interests include assessing mental health in the workplace, the health of doctors, health surveillance for work related diseases and practicalities of improving resilience and wellbeing at work. She is also the Faculty of Occupational Medicine teaching lead for Norwich Medical School and a tutor for the University of Manchester MSc in Occupational Medicine.

The clinical skills and competencies that occupational health practitioners develop can add greatly to the health and work interface. Dr Sally Coomber intends to use her NICE Fellowship to explore the potential of clinical care pathways for OH, making it transparent where and how OH works and how its distinctive working relationships interact. She also intends to develop her ideas for START, a 'simple toolkit for auditing regular tasks' in OH. This can provide widely available quality assurance tools as part of the foundations of good practice for the speciality.

Victoria Elliot

Principal Care Consultant

Orders of St John Care Trust, Lincolnshire

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Victoria Elliot is Principal Care Consultant (Research and Innovation) with the Orders of St John Care Trust, a not for profit charity caring for 3,500 residents in 70 care homes across four counties. Prior to her current role, Victoria was Care Director with the Trust for seven years, responsible for all aspects of clinical governance. During this period she appointed the first My Home Life Admiral Nurse posts in the care home sector, in conjunction with My Home Life and Dementia UK. Victoria has worked in a variety of clinical and managerial roles in the NHS prior to her appointment with OSJCT.

Victoria aims to raise awareness of NICE amongst both nurses and care staff in the social care sector, and also to make guidance from NICE more accessible and relevant to care teams in residential and nursing homes. She will use her time as a Fellow to influence outputs from NICE to ensure that they reflect the needs of the social care sector and make a tangible difference to the lived experience of both residents and care teams in this sector.

Veronica Maynard

Clinical Education

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Dr Veronica Maynard, Senior Lecturer Postgraduate Clinical Education and Lead for Evidence Based Medicine BMBS Programme, Plymouth University Peninsula Schools of Medicine and Dentistry (PU PSMD).

Veronica originally qualified as a physiotherapist in 1986 from the Royal London Hospital and then worked clinically, both in the UK and in Australia from 1986-1997. During this time, she specialised in paediatric neurology, with clinical and managerial posts at St Mary's Hospital Paddington; Great Ormond Street; and Queen Elizabeth Hospital for Children, Hackney. From 1991-1993, she completed an MSc in Research Methods at Kings College, London; and in 2004 was awarded a PhD from Peninsula Medical School, Universities of Exeter and Plymouth for research into the effects of muscle stretch on spasticity in stroke patients.

Veronica has been actively involved in the leadership and design of both undergraduate and postgraduate educational programmes, with a particular focus on evidence based practice; and in 2011 was appointed Lead for Evidence Based Medicine on the BMBS programme at Peninsula College of Medicine and Dentistry; and in 2013 Lead for Postgraduate Programmes at Plymouth University Peninsula Schools of Medicine and Dentistry (PU PSMD).

The focus of Veronica's fellowship will be around ensuring that the principles and practice of evidence based medicine and shared decision making are embedded into the medical curriculum at PU PSMD and that through collaboration with NICE, to ensure their experiences are shared with other colleges throughout the region, both locally and nationally. As a NICE Fellow, she will act as an educational ambassador, contributing to the education strategy at NICE and to their guidance programmes and initiatives; to help ensure that medical and dental students emerge with a sound understanding of evidence based practice and shared decision making, and an in-depth understanding of the work of NICE.

Mojgan H Sani

Head of Pharmacy & Clinical Director Medicines Optimisation

Nottingham University Hospitals NHS Trust

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Mojgan is the Head of Pharmacy & Clinical Director Medicines Optimisation at Nottingham University Hospitals NHS Trust.

She has led the process of change management within several NHS organisations. Examples include the development of pharmacy satellites operating at ward level as part of the Medicines Management Agenda, redesigning services such as clinical pharmacy services to Clinical Decisions Unit/Acute Admissions, extended pharmacy opening hours, skill mix review projects and discharge clinics to facilitate reduction in length of stay. She has also been closely engaged with the medication safety agenda, Clinical Governance and patient experience committees as part of the CQC requirements.

Mojgan will be acting as an ambassador for NICE in her capacity as a Fellow with a personal area of interest in the national Medicines Management and Optimisation Agenda. The medicines optimisation agenda will ensure that patients have the best-possible experience and outcome by ensuring that the correct medicines are prescribed to manage specific conditions in line with the evidence, minimising medication risks and re-admissions as well as reducing medicines waste.

Andy Tilden

Director of Sector Development - Skills


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Andy Tilden works for Skills for Care as Director of Sector Development - Skills. Skills for Care is a registered charity which supports employers to develop the skills of the 1.63 million social care workers in England and to plan for the future workforce. Andy leads a standards, learning and qualifications team, an apprenticeship team and has overall management for area teams in the South West, the Midlands and the North West.

Andy initially trained as teacher before moving into residential child care and education welfare work. He then re-trained and worked as a social worker before moving into lecturing. Andy then joined the NHS to work as a trainer and a National Vocational Qualification (NVQ) assessment centre manager before helping to set up a small charity to offer training and qualifications to the health and social care sector. He eventually joined Topps England (the predecessor of Skills for Care) in 2000. He has been involved in a range of NICE guidance and standards projects.

Throughout his work career Andy has always maintained his twin interests of social care and learning and development. He regards the Fellowship as a natural progression and intends to focus his energies on ensuring that NICE guidance and standards ‘reach the parts of the sector that others have failed to reach' in order to support workers and employers to drive up quality for those who receive care and support!


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