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Research for Patient Benefit - West Midlands Regional Advisory Committee


01 January 2019


1.0 - January 2019


NIHR Research for Patient Benefit is a national funding programme that funds research on a regional level through eight Regional Advisory Committees. Each region has a local committee chair and members, and patient or public members. 

Regional chair

Dr Rebecca Kearney is Chair of the West Midlands Regional Advisory Committee.

Committee members





Dr Opeyemi Babatunde

Research Associate: Systematic Reviews 

Keele University

Systematic reviews and meta-analysis, clinical studies and randomised controlled trials

Dr Srikanth Bellary


Aston University

Research interests include epidemiology of type 2 diabetes, type 2 diabetes and ageing, diabetic kidney disease and new therapies for type 2 diabetes

Professor Matthew Brookes

Professor of Gastroenterology

Royal Wolverhampton NHS Trust

Gastroenterologist with an expertise in colorectal cancer, cell biology, endoscopy, inflammatory bowel disease and anaemia

Professor Julie Bruce


University of Warwick

Experienced in clinical trials and surgical epidemiology with main interests in surgical and patient-reported outcomes

Dr Blagojevic-Bucknall

Senior Lecturer in Statistics

Keele University

Statistical modelling, Electronic health records, Prediction modelling, Survival analysis, Propensity scores, Treatment-Outcome research, Primary care health research

Dr Claire Burton

NIHR Clinical Lecturer in Primary Care

Keele University

GP with experience in primary care health research, electronic health record research, systematic reviews, randomised controlled trials, musculoskeletal pain and community health

Dr Keith Couper

Assistant professor in emergency and critical care

University of Warwick

Clinical background in critical care nursing and research interests include health services research including clinical trials, cardiac arrest, critical care, emergency care, resuscitation

Dr Sarah Damery

Research Fellow

University of Birmingham

The organisation and delivery of services to optimise the management of long term conditions and multimorbidity within health and social care settings

Mrs Caroline Dean

Public Member



Professor Thomas Dietrich

Professor of oral surgery

University of Birmingham

 Clinical Epidemiology/Clinical Trials in Oral Health research, particular wrt Periodontology and Oral Surgery and the link between oral diseases and systemic health outcomes

Mr Adrian Gardner

Consultant Spine Surgeon

The Royal Orthopaedic Hospital NHS Foundation Trust

Consultant Spine Surgeon with orthopaedic background at the Royal Orthopaedic Hospital and Birmingham Women’s and Children’s Hospital, specialising in both adult and paediatric spinal deformity

Dr Francis Gilchrist

Senior Lecturer and Consultant

Keele University

Cystic fibrosis, paediatric asthma and paediatric flexible bronchoscopy

Dr Susan Hunter

Senior Lecturer

Keele University

Evaluating complex therapeutic interventions for neurological patients, particularly on interventions for the hemiplegic upper limb, life after stroke, and psychosocial effects of upper limb dysfunction

Dr Katie Newby

Associate Professor

University of Hertfordshire

Research interests include development and evaluation of digital health behaviour change interventions, sexual health and infectious disease. Psychology background with skills in systematic reviews, meta-analysis, qualitative and quantitative research

Dr Jason Schaub Lecturer in Social Work and Social Care

 University of Birmingham

Clinical trials,Secondary analysis,Qualitative research,Behavioural

Dr Alice Sitch

Lecturer in Biostatistics

University of Birmingham

Statistician, research focus is test evaluation, specifically the use of tests to monitor progressive and recurrent disease and studies of biological variability

Ms Helen Weatherly


University of York

Health economist for economic evaluations of social care interventions, including the design, conduct and analysis of these applied economic evaluations, and related methodological research

Dr Simon White

Reader in Pharmacy Practice

Keele University

Qualitative and consensus research methodologies, health services research, polypharmacy and medicines optimisation