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MIDAS Team Biographies

Professor Andrew Clegg, Professor of Health Services Research, University of Central Lancashire (UCLan).Andrew is Professor of Health Services Research at the University of Central Lancashire (UCLan), leading the Health Technology Assessment Group at UCLan and the NIHR ARC NWC MIDAS cross-cutting theme. Previously he was Director of the Southampton Health Technology Assessments Centre (University of Southampton) (2002-2014), an NIHR centre of excellence, supporting the National Institute for Health and Care Excellence guidance and guidelines programmes. Andrew’s research interests focus on the use of methods for evidence synthesis (including meta-analyses and network meta-analysis) and economic evaluations (including economic and statistical modelling) in decision-making regarding the provision of health and social care. He has contributed to systematic reviews and economic evaluations assessing medicines, devices, procedures, diagnostics, screening programmes and health promotion/public health programmes in a broad range of priority areas, including cardiovascular disease, cancer, obesity, mental health, sexual health and domestic violence.

Dr. Alison Doherty, NIHR ARC NWC MIDAS Theme Manager and Research Fellow within the Health Technology Assessment Group, University of Central Lancashire (UCLan), supporting the development and delivery of ARC NWC research to reduce health inequalities and improve health & wellbeing. Alison’s research activities include evidence synthesis, particularly systematic reviews, and co-producing qualitative research with vulnerable communities. Her experience includes health services research into issues such as polypharmacy and deprescribing for patients with multimorbidities, child and adolescent mental health services, access to primary healthcare for people with learning disabilities and or autism, and psychological support interventions for those exposed to mass outbreaks such as influenza pandemics. Her previous public sector experience has included developing and implementing various local authority and partnership strategies, plans and programmes in public health, health promotion, community cohesion and community safety. Member of the Faculty’s Athena Swan steering group.

Dr Valerio Benedetto, Research Fellow in the Health Technology Assessment (HTA) Unit at the University of Central Lancashire (UCLan) and a member of ARC NWC MIDAS. Valerio is an economist with expertise in quantitative analysis and his research focuses on health economics. His activities include the design and delivery of economic and statistical modelling and analyses for health research projects. He has experience of working on projects focusing on different disease areas and health settings. Valerio has contributed to the success of projects funded by national and international funders, and regularly collaborates on grant capture activities.

Dr Luís Filipe, Senior Associate Researcher at the Faculty of Health and Medicine, Lancaster University.Luís is a health economist based at Lancaster University. As a member of the NIHR ARC NWC MIDAS theme he has worked in systematic reviews of the literature assessing the suitability of traditional frameworks and outcome measures to the economic evaluation of interventions in digital health and in intellectual disabilities. Luís has also been working in developing capacity in the methodology of Discrete Choice Experiments. Luís has been acting as a MIDAS representative in the NIHR ARC NWC IPH theme, where he has been working in the topics of unmet need, allocation of resources to community services, and the effects of shielding during the COVID-19 pandemic.
Luís is a member of the executive committee of the Portuguese Association of Health Economics (APES).

Dr Mark Goodall, Research Fellow in the Department of Health Services Research at the University of Liverpool supporting the NIHR ARC NWC through the cross-cutting theme MIDAS. He is a quantitative researcher with experience of using mixed methods. Current research is focussed on Health and Social care improvement, including Public, Mental, and Physical Health. Previous research experience included Clinical trials in Nigeria and Malawi (Africa), Systematic reviews, Health improvement and behavioural intervention trials, and observational study of Local authority wellbeing boards (UK). In addition, Mark has a role in the NIHR Research Design Service North West (RDSNW) advising and giving methodological support on all types of grant applications to open national peer-reviewed funding programmes.

Cath Harris, Information Specialist in the Health Technology Assessment (HTA) Unit at the University of Central Lancashire (UCLan) and a member of ARC NWC MIDAS theme. Cath is a qualified information professional providing specialist research support for systematic reviews, evidence syntheses and health technology assessments including designing and running literature searches and providing advice on search methodologies and reference management.

Joanna Harrison is a Research Fellow in Evidence Synthesis and Summary. Her experience in this area includes the conduct of systematic reviews including Cochrane, Health Technology Assessment and NIHR funded evidence syntheses. Joanna is currently working on the Rapid Conversion of Evidence Summaries (RaCES) project, collaborating with health and social care professionals to address an area of clinical need, appraise the relevant evidence and inform practice. Joanna’s previous research experience was in stroke research at UCLan, with a particular interest in qualitative and mixed-method approaches. Joanna also worked as a Research Capacity Delivery Manager for the NIHR CLAHRC NWC, facilitating research internships and student fellowships. Joanna has experience of teaching research topics at post-graduate level and is a Fellow of the Higher Education Academy.

James Hill is a Senior Research Fellow within the Health Technology Group at the University of Central Lancashire. His research interests are health informatics, evidence synthesis methodology, automated systematic reviews, public health, rehabilitation, implementation science. James is a qualified physiotherapist and has over a decade experience of teaching and learning within higher education. James is a member of the healthcare professional counsel, chartered Society of physiotherapy and fellow of the Higher Education Academy. James has experience of project management, evidence synthesis and implementation science.

Katerina Panagaki, NIHR ARC NWC Senior Research Associate and Health Equity Mainstreaming Lead, based at the Department of Health Research, Lancaster University. Her most recent research focused on mental health and health inequalities. She is a qualified psychologist with working experience in the NHS, the third sector, and policy. She also has a background in cultural anthropology and epidemiology. As a result, she has an interest in implementing research and translating good practice into policy.

Dr. Oliver Hamer, NIHR ARC NWC Senior Research Assistant within the Health Technology Assessment Group, based at the University of Central Lancashire. Oliver is devoted to promoting public health and is experienced in conducting research projects employing both qualitative and quantitative methods. His research interests are in public health, evidence synthesis methodology, psychometrics and health inequalities. His most recent research has focused on respiratory medicine including conditions such as COPD and Bronchiectasis. Oliver has experience of project co-ordination and evidence synthesis with a background in public health epidemiology. He also has experience teaching within higher education as a fellow of the Higher Education Academy.

Dr Katalin Ujhelyi Gomez, NIHR ARC NWC MIDAS Research Associate in the Department of Primary Care and Mental Health, University of Liverpool. Katalin is a mixed methods researcher with a counselling and psychology background and experience in behaviour science. She has conducted research primarily in substance misuse, and comorbid substance use and mental health problems, in addition to the multimorbidity of mental health problems and alcohol attributable non-communicable diseases. She has experience in conducting systematic reviews, identifying behaviour change techniques (general and alcohol-specific), designing and evaluating interventions, and patient and public involvement. She has also conducted research around building resilience with reference to COVID-19 geographies to provide recommendations on strengthening resilience in British Cities for future pandemics. Her other COVID-19-related study explored the social and psychological factors of COVID-19 specifically in the Liverpool City Region. Katalin has a research interest in the increase of wellbeing and resilience, positive psychology, strengths-based approaches, and social prescribing.


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