Patient Outcomes in Health Research Group


Steering committee

Tim Anfilogoff

Tim Anfilogoff is the Integration Lead for Herts Valleys CCG. He has a particular focus on social prescribing and developing community resilience, showcased through the new Community Navigators Service and the development of the CCG carers’ strategy. Seconded as part of the integration agenda from the County Council, Tim’s substantive post was Head of Community Wellbeing, commissioning £15m worth of voluntary sector and prevention services. He developed HertsHelp; a triaging service for voluntary and community services, which is now the basis for social prescribing in the County. Tim regularly speaks nationally, and recently internationally, on the carers’ agenda, having led on the multi-agency carers’ strategy in Hertfordshire, and the Health and Wellbeing Board’s Commitment to Carers. He led Hertfordshire to Beacon status for supporting carers in 2005 whilst working on the Action for Carers in Employment (ACE) Project in Hertfordshire 2005-7. Tim also managed the National Carers’ Strategy and the Carers Grant for the Department of Health from 1999-2000 and wrote practice guidance on the Carers and Disabled Children Act (2000).

Dr Marcello Bertotti

Marcello applies conceptual frameworks from multiple perspectives to research community health, with particular focus on the effectiveness and cost-effectiveness of non-clinical interventions that may contribute to improve individual and community health and wellbeing. Marcello uses innovative evaluation methodologies and methods to solve health issues and tackle health inequalities. He held research grants from the Arts and Humanities Research Council (AHRC), Economic and Social Research Council (ESRC), Netherland Organisation for Scientific Research (NWO), Health Foundation (Shine) and completed consultancy projects for Public Health England, and Newham Clinical Commissioning Group.

With the support of a grant from the Health Foundation, Marcello recently led a large-scale evaluation of social prescribing in collaboration with City and Hackney Clinical Commissioning Group and Queen Mary University of London. He also led research on homelessness and mental health pathways and alternative community currencies (e.g. Time Banks), all of which focus on developing asset-based approaches to health and wellbeing.

Dr Michael Dixon

Michael has held numerous national leadership roles including: the first chair of the NHS Alliance, a leader of the GP/clinical commissioning movement, acting president of NHS Clinical Commissioners, special advisor on Practice Based Commissioning to Lord Darzi, member of the National Stakeholder Forum, the National Steering Group and the National Strategy Group for Clinical Commissioning. He is also a member of the NHS Sustainable Development Unit National Advisory Group. He holds honorary positions at the University of Westminster, University College, London, HSMC (University of Birmingham) and Peninsula Medical School, Exeter.

Professor Chris Drinkwater

Professor Chris Drinkwater was an inner city GP in Newcastle for many years and is now emeritus Professor of Primary Care Development at Northumbria University. He was the President and Public Health Lead of the NHS Alliance until 2014. He is the Chair of HealthWORKS Newcastle, and a Trustee of the Northumberland, Tyne & Wear Community Foundation. Until recently he was chair of the Newcastle West CCG Partnership Forum and he also chaired the Newcastle NESTA funded People Powered Health programme. He now chairs Ways to Wellness (, a charitable foundation responsible for the development and delivery of a social impact bond (SIB) for social prescribing for long-term conditions in Newcastle upon Tyne - the first SIB in health. Professor Drinkwater has considerable expertise and knowledge of social impact bonds and social prescription. Ways to Wellness has been commissioned by Newcastle and Gateshead CCG Alliance with financial support from the Big Lottery Commissioning for Better Outcomes Fund, the Cabinet Office Social outcomes Fund and Bridges Ventures Social Investment Funds.

Michael is a general practitioner at the Culm Valley Integrated Centre for Health in Devon, which is widely regarded as a prototype for general practice of the future. The practice utilises the skills and expertise of a health advisor to support and advise patients, referred by their GPs, to make lifestyle improvements. A recent mixed-methods evaluation of the service has shown how this social prescription approach can make fast and sustained improvements in how patients with prediabetes and Type 2 diabetes manage their health.

Dr James Fleming

James is a GP with considerable knowledge as a social prescription provider and GP in Padiham, near Burnley. In 2010 he set up a social enterprise, The Green Dream Project CIC, to provide solutions for patients with social problems impacting on their physical and mental health. Patients needed multi-agency support but were unable to coordinate the various self-referral mechanisms. The project tackles many issues such as isolation, long unemployment, clinical dependence, social exclusion and more through providing one-on-one support, marrying health and social care and by investing in community social assets. The service has won multiple awards, is recognised nationally as an innovator in Primary Care and serves 30% of the county’s population. It is commissioned by East Lancashire CCG and has expanded to provide specialist nurse practitioners for the over 75s living in nursing homes in Burnley district. Throughout all The Green Dream Project’s work there is a strong focus on the work being meaningful to the client, on real outcomes that are measurable, and on clear governance and safety protocols.

Caroline Frostick

Caroline has recently moved from the Psychology Department at the University of East London to the Institute for Health and Human Development (IHHD) where she has just finished working on the evaluation of a large-scale social prescribing project with City and Hackney CCG. During her time at the Institute for Research in Child Development (IRCD) she worked for several years on a variety of studies with infants, mothers and adolescents; most notably project managing the evaluation of the adolescent component of the Well London Programme; a ground-breaking, holistic community development approach to health. She has also worked as a counsellor with a South London based charity for women experiencing postnatal depression. Her research interests include the evaluation of alternative treatment pathways for improving mental health outcomes and person-centred approaches to mental health recovery. In a previous life, she spent almost a decade working as a freelancer in the television industry.

Dr Nicholas Herbert

Nicholas Herbert is the main point of contact for the Social Prescribing Network and he has run the day-to-day evaluation of a novel social prescription service offered to patients with diabetes and prediabetes at the Culm Valley Integrated Centre for Health, Devon. This project involved the collection and analysis of quantitative (physiological and self-reported health measures) and qualitative (interview) data, to map patient outcomes and experiences of the service over a five-year period. He has first-hand experience of working in the NHS as a clinician and has completed a PhD in Audiology (specialising in behavioural outcomes). Nicholas previously worked on two projects aimed at improving experiences and outcomes of NHS patients, in the School of Healthcare at the University of Leeds.

Dan Hopewell

Dan Hopewell is Director of Knowledge and Innovation at the Bromley by Bow Centre, an innovative community centre in East London, and was previously the Director of Strategy and Director of Services. Prior to arriving at Bromley by Bow, Dan taught art at Barnet College. Before that he worked in Esteli in Nicaragua for 15 years developing highly effective programmes for street children and young people based around public art.

Dr Richard Kimberlee

Richard graduated with a first class Sociology/Psychology BA honours degree from Lancaster University in 1983. His MSc. Politics (Distinction) was gained from the University of West England in 1996, followed by a PhD in 2000. He has taught at Liverpool John Moores University, Bradford University and Bath Spa University. His current research interests include evaluating complex community and health interventions. This evaluative work includes analysis of SRB, Big Lottery, NRSI, Sport England and EDF programmes. He has worked with several third sector organizations in the UK and across Europe to develop the capacity of the sector to profile their work. He has many years’ experience of working with both quantitative and qualitative research methods and in recent years he has undertaken Social Return on Investment (SROI) analysis of a broad range community initiatives including community transport, LinkAge, Thomas Pocklington Trust, Healthy Living Centres and Social Prescribing. He recently reported to Bristol Clinical Commissioning Group on social prescribing activity across the city and made policy recommendations on sustaining and expanding holistic social prescribing practice.

Alyson McGregor

Alyson has 30 years’ experience working in a range of roles and sectors that meet the health and wellbeing needs of patients and communities. She is currently Director of Altogether Better, a NHS national network organization with an award winning evidenced based approach, working with over 21,000 volunteer health champions who draw on their own assets and resources to improve health and wellbeing and service outcomes. Alyson believes a sustainable solution to the challenges faced by the NHS lies in improving the quality of our relationship with people in communities. Altogether Better works with over 60 practices in 16 Clinical Commissioning Groups (CCGs) across the country (as well as internationally) to prototype a radical attempt at system change, introducing an intervention designed to enable primary care givers and the population they serve to co-evolve. She was voted one of the top 50 inspirational women leaders in the NHS in 2013 and commended by the judges who said: “Community empowerment is going to be important in the NHS and Alyson is a visionary.”

Lev Pedro

Lev works in the policy and public services team at the National Council for Voluntary Organisations (NCVO). He works to ensure that voluntary organisations have access to commissioning opportunities, and the skills to compete. Previously Lev worked for eight years at the Kensington and Chelsea Social Council where his role included organisational development for local health improvement projects, and running a strategic forum for voluntary sector health organisations. Lev has worked in senior roles in the charity sector since 1987 which include his position as CEO of the Immune Development Trust. He has sat on the boards of the BME Health Forum and the Adverse Psychiatric Reactions Information Link (APRIL), as well as his local residents' association.

Dr Karen Pilkington

Dr Karen Pilkington is currently Senior Research Fellow at the University of Westminster. Her research focuses on chronic health problems, the effectiveness of complex interventions and implementation of evidence in the NHS.  She has experience in both the NHS and academic sectors, having worked in clinical and educational roles in the NHS for a number of years, developing clinical guidelines and supporting evidence-based practice. Through this, she has gained a deep understanding of the practical challenges involved in changing practice and experience of collaborating with health and social care professionals across organisational boundaries. Karen moved into academia in 2003 and has been involved in a series of Department of Health projects evaluating complex health interventions and, most recently, a social prescribing-based intervention for people at risk of or with diabetes. Karen is a qualified pharmacist and information scientist and has extensive experience of conducting systematic reviews. She is currently involved in several international health information projects including several Cochrane systematic reviews. Karen is also on the editorial board of several journals and is a regular reviewer for a large number of journals and grant-giving bodies.

Dr Marie Polley

Marie is a Senior Lecturer in Health Sciences and Research at the University of Westminster. Marie has a PhD in molecular carcinogenesis and started her research career as a biomedical scientist. Marie has also been a Reiki Master for the past 20 years. Using her experiences in different health paradigms, Marie has spent many years researching how to combine different healthcare approaches to provide effective patient led care. Marie has played a central role in developing Measure Yourself Concerns and Wellbeing (MYCaW), an internationally used Patient Reported Outcome Measure which allows patients a voice to nominate and score their primary concerns thus capturing all relevant information when patients are receiving holistic care.

Marie has chaired the British Society for Integrative Oncology for the past 2 years and is collaborating internationally with integrative medicine clinicians and healthcare professions to develop global guidelines for measuring patients’ outcomes in integrative oncology. Marie collaborates with several charities to evaluate the impact of their work. Amongst other things, Marie is Principal Investigator on a project in collaboration with Michael Dixon, using a social prescribing approach to support patients with prediabetes and Type 2 diabetes.

Professor Damien Ridge

Damien Ridge is a Professor of Health Studies, and specialist in patient experience, at the University of Westminster, London, previously of the Health Experiences Research Group (HERG) at the University of Oxford, where he first began to flesh out what recovery from depression entailed for patients. In 2010, the UK-wide National Institute for Health and Care Excellence (NICE) adopted his research extensively into their guidance on the management of depression in adults in the UK. In 2014 his broad depression programme was singled out for its “outstanding reach and significance” in the results of the UK-wide Research Excellence Framework 2014. In 2015, his work in originating the Atlas Men’s Wellbeing pilot programme for distressed men in primary care was shortlisted for the BMJ Award (primary care).

He is a sociologist who has published over 60 academic papers and one sole authored book. He has broad interests in patient experiences of health problems, HIV, depression, distress, recovery, masculinity, sexuality and men’s wellbeing. He also provides psychotherapy in the community, and is passionate about translating research into wider patient benefit.

Sheinaz Stansfield

Sheinaz Stansfield is a Practice Manager Partner at the Oxford Terrace and Rawling Road Medical Group. She has led the multi award winning practice, functioning beyond the Five Year Forward View. She trained as a nurse and health visitor, and has held senior management roles in the commissioning and provision of health services. She became a Practice Manger in 2008 and as PBC OD lead, she supported the set-up of NHS Gateshead CCG. She was then elected as the Practice representative on the NHS Newcastle Gateshead CCG Governing Body. She is the Practice Manager Representative on the Royal College of General Practitioner (RCGP)’s Northern Faculty Board. At a national level, she is a fellow of NHS IQ (NHS Improving Quality) and a member of the National Association of Primary Care (NAPC) Council and Practice Innovation Network, which facilitates her passion for patient involvement, social prescribing and quality in General Practice.

Bev Taylor

Bev joined the Active Communities team in 2015 and has worked with communities all her life. In the 90’s, she worked locally in Bury, Lancashire, supporting self-help groups, setting up community care services and encouraging co-production. She has developed leadership programmes for voluntary sector staff and volunteers and from 2012-15 co-led Regional Voices, a voluntary sector strategic partner to DH, PHE and NHS England. In this role, she worked closely with CQC, seeking feedback from the most under-served groups about the quality and safety of services, feeding this into CQC to shape local inspections. She lives in York with her teenage children. 

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