Great North Pharmacy Research Collaborative Conference 2024

12/07/2024 8:30 am to 12/07/2024 5:00 pm

Event Details

The theme for our annual conference is Spotlight on Women’s Health: rewriting the narrative.

We will showcase Foundation Pharmacist projects and work undertaken by pharmacy professionals from hospital, community and primary care, as well as examples of research undertaken at our local academic institutions. Crucially, this event will be an opportunity to meet peers and leaders from across the profession, to share, learn, support and be supported.

The 2024 conference will be chaired by:

  • Julia Blagburn, Consultant Pharmacist for Integration, The Newcastle upon Tyne Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust
  • Anne Black, Regional QA Specialist Pharmacist – NENC, Pharmacy Production and QC, Specialist Pharmacy Service

We are delighted to welcome the following speakers to the conference:

  • Stephanie Watson, Clinical Pharmacy Technician, The Newcastle upon Tyne Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust
  • Carla Cressy, CEO and Founder, The Endometriosis Foundation
  • Samantha Allen, Chief Executive, NENC Integrated Care Board
  • Prof Adam Todd, Professor of Pharmaceutical Public Health, Newcastle University
  • Tase Oputu, Associate Director of Medicines Optimisation, Medicines Value & Performance -NHS Kent & Medway, Chair, English Pharmacy Board, Royal Pharmaceutical Society
  • Alice Wiseman, Director of Public Health Gateshead and Newcastle, Gateshead Council
  • Ivan Hollingsworth, Director, Centric Consultants Limited
  • Chi Onwurah MP, MP for Newcastle upon Tyne Central

@GtNorthPharmRes #GNPRC2024

Please join the Facebook group

By working together as one pharmacy team across multiple organisations and sectors we have a unique opportunity to improve the quality of care, reduce the risk of harm from medicines and increase efficiencies.


We are supporting the Newcastle Foodbank and we are asking delegates to kindly donate the following items:

  • Sanitary towels of all absorbencies (we do not get many requests for tampons)
  • Incontinence pads
  • Roll on deodorants
  • 2 in 1 shampoo and conditioners
  • Shower gel
  • Intimate wipes

The programme can be viewed here

We are delighted to announce our conference Chairs for 2024:

  • Julia Blagburn, Consultant Pharmacist for Integration, The Newcastle upon Tyne Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust
  • Anne Black, Regional QA Specialist Pharmacist – NENC, Pharmacy Production and QC, Specialist Pharmacy Service

Julia Blagburn

Julia Blagburn
Consultant Pharmacist for Integration
The Newcastle upon Tyne Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust

Julia has been a clinical pharmacist for longer than she would care to admit; she has worked for several Shelford group hospitals and holds a Doctor of Pharmacy degree for her research into evidence-based clinical pharmacy for older people in UK hospitals. Julia has authored publications and CPPE learning programmes on reflective practice, older people, polypharmacy and medication review, clinical audit, preventing hospital admissions caused by medicines and sharing decisions with patients. In her current role, Julia leads a large team of pharmacy professionals working with primary health and social care, the voluntary sector and community networks to increase wellbeing, improve health outcomes and reduce health inequalities across Newcastle. Julia credentialed as a Consultant Pharmacist in 2023 and is a coach and mentor for others building their portfolios; she is mum to two rugby-mad children who are the light of her life.

Anne Black

Anne Black
Regional QA Specialist Pharmacist – NENC
Pharmacy Production and QC
Specialist Pharmacy Service

Anne Black works for the NHS Specialist Pharmacy Service. Her role is Regional Quality Assurance Specialist Pharmacist for North East and Yorkshire and she is based in the NENC. She developed an interest and expertise in clinical trials and advanced therapy medicinal products as a Qualified Person for investigational medicinal products. She has since used this expertise to emphasise the important role of Pharmacy to optimise patient safety in the delivery of these medicines. Anne is Chair of the NHS Pan UK Pharmacy Working Group for ATMPs, as well as sitting on NHS Pharmaceutical QA Committee, the Pharmaceutical Aseptics Services Group and the National Pharmacy Clinical Trials Advisory Group.



We will be joined by the following speakers

Stephanie Watson

Stephanie Watson
Clinical Pharmacy Technician
The Newcastle upon Tyne Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust

@NewcastleHosps   @theendofound

Steph Watson is a Clinical Pharmacy Technician in Newcastle Hospital Trust, based in the Outer West Primary Care Network. She is an Ambassador for The Endometriosis Foundation championing women’s health and challenging inequalities.


Carla Cressy

Carla Cressy
CEO and Founder
The Endometriosis Foundation


Carla Cressy is the Founder and Chief Executive of The Endometriosis Foundation and Decision Aid member for The National Institute of Health and Care Excellence. Carla spends the majority of her time helping others gain access to care and support and providing insight into the development of national health guidelines.


Samantha Allen

Samantha Allen
Chief Executive
North East North Cumbria Integrated Care Board

@NENC_NHS   @samanthallen

Sam is an experienced NHS Chief Executive and joined the North East and North Cumbria to set up the ICB in January 2022.  Sam is also Chair of the NHS Maternity and Neonatal Board.  In addition to her NHS career, which spans nearly 30 years, Sam is also the Chair of the  Health and Care Women Leaders Network for the NHS Confederation, a member of The Kings Fund General Advisory Council, a Leadership Fellow at St. George’s House and a Trustee of the Chartered Management Institute.


Professor Adam Todd

Prof Adam Todd
Professor of Pharmaceutical
Public Health Newcastle University

@UniofNewcastle   @adamtodd138

Adam Todd is a qualified pharmacist and Professor of Pharmaceutical Public Health, at the School of Pharmacy, Newcastle University. His research is highly interdisciplinary, and uses methods from the social sciences, public health, clinical medicine, and epidemiology. He leads a programme of research that applies pharmaceutical knowledge to prevent disease, prolong life, promote health, and reduce health inequalities, across different populations. Adam currently chairs the Scientific Advisory Panel for Pharmacy Research UK, and also sits on the national NIHR HTA Prioritisation Committee for community health and social care. He has total career research funding of over £15 million, including funding from the NIHR, Macmillan Cancer Research, the Barbour Foundation, and the Sir Bobby Robson Foundation. Adam has published extensively in the areas of medicine utilisation and healthcare inequalities, including over 100 peer-reviewed research articles, four books, as well as an international patent.


Tase Oputu

Tase Oputu
Associate Director of Medicines Optimisation, Medicines Value & Performance
NHS Kent & Medway
Chair, English Pharmacy Board, Royal Pharmaceutical Society

@rpharms  @tase3121

Drawing upon a rich tapestry of experiences spanning nearly three decades, Tase has dedicated her career to advancing pharmacy, diversity, and social justice.

From her early days with Voluntary Services Overseas in Tanzania to her impactful roles in public health strategy and senior hospital pharmacy management across the NHS in London and the South East, she has consistently pursued excellence. Currently serving as the Associate Director for Medicines Value and Performance at NHS Kent & Medway Integrated Care Board, Tase aims to decrease health inequalities and improve health outcomes through the cost-effective use of medicines.

Additionally, she serves as the Chair of the English Pharmacy Board of the Royal Pharmaceutical Society, tirelessly advocating for the advancement of pharmacy practice and the empowerment of pharmacists nationwide.

Tase’s passion for equality, diversity, and inclusion is palpable, evidenced by her graduation from the Ready Now NHS Leadership Academy programme and her leadership in chairing BME staff networks at Newham Hospital and Maidstone & Tunbridge Wells NHS Trust. Beyond her professional endeavours, Tase generously dedicates her time and expertise as a Trustee of Pharmacy Research UK and a volunteer for the Migration Museum. Deeply dedicated to uplifting others, she serves as a mentor, guiding countless individuals towards realising their full potential.

Her commitment to quality improvement is evident in her role as a trained Institute of Healthcare Improvement QI coach, where she leverages her expertise to drive transformative change. Moreover, Tase is a fierce advocate for planetary health and climate justice, recognising the interconnectedness between environmental sustainability and human health and well-being.

With a steadfast dedication to improving healthcare outcomes, fostering inclusive environments, and advocating for social change, Tase continues to inspire and empower those around her.


Alice Wiseman

Alice Wiseman
Director of Public Health
Gateshead Council

@gateshead  @AliceWiseman11

Alice Wiseman has been Director of Public Health in Gateshead and Newcastle since April 2024. Prior to this she was the DPH in Gateshead and has been registered with the UK Public Health Register since December 2009. Before becoming a DPH Alice worked in a broad range of senior public health roles across Tyne and Wear.

Alice’s first degree was in Social Policy at Newcastle University, followed by a P.G.C.E, before training in public health.

Alice is passionate about improving health and well-being with a particular focus on tackling the unfair inequalities faced by some communities. Alice believes that effective action to address these inequalities requires dedicated effort across the determinants of health, as set out in the first Marmot Review ‘Fair Society, Healthy Lives’ (2010).

Alice is driven by the injustice that two babies, born on the same day and the same hospital, can experience such different life chances, due entirely to the circumstances into which they are born.

Alice’s approach is firmly rooted in the belief that people, in their own communities, must be central to solving the issues of inequality; firstly, through sharing lived experience and secondly, through identifying innovative and creative ways to improve outcomes for their community.

Alice is also involved in the production of research evidence and in 2022 Alice led a collaboration between Gateshead Council and Newcastle University which secured a five-year NIHR contract with the Health Determinants Research Collaborative. Research priorities have focussed on opportunities to gain a better understanding of the lived experience, and impact of, Government policy on people in some of the most disadvantaged communities. Using research to give a voice to people who are least likely to be heard, and often easiest to ignore, is central to her work in tackling inequalities at a local level.

Alice is a Vice President for ADPH and the policy lead for addictions. In this role Alice, works closely with national colleagues and has given evidence to several All-Party Parliamentary Groups and a Parliamentary Committee.


Ivan Hollingsworth

Ivan Hollingsworth
Centric Consultants Limited


Culture champion. Award-winning fundraiser. Former elite-athlete. Meet Ivan Hollingsworth. A former pharmaceutical executive, Ivan has raised over £500,000 for charity and now works with individuals and teams to banish culture-washing from the UK workplaces and empower individuals to achieve their full potential. Ivan talks candidly about what his experience of being a dad to Seb, his now 14-year old who underwent open-heart surgery as a baby, has taught him about resilience in practice. He also shares the strategy and tools to allow you adopt a growth mindset and how a single tweet captured the attention of some of Hollywood’s biggest stars. An inspirational individual with a truly unique perspective on how to thrive personally and professionally, Ivan combines relatable experiences with actionable strategies to leave the audience feeling empowered to change their mindset, and with the understanding of how to build trust, positively influence those around them and lead happy, healthy lives.


Chi Onwurah MP

Chi Onwurah
MP for Newcastle upon Tyne Central

Chi Onwurah is a Member of Parliament representing Newcastle upon Tyne Central and she is the Shadow Minister for Science, Research & Innovation.

Born in Wallsend, Chi attended Kenton Comprehensive School in Newcastle, where she was elected to be the school’s ‘MP’ in mock elections aged 17.

Chi is a Chartered Electrical Engineer and before entering Parliament spent over twenty years working on engineering projects around the world. She has previously served as Head of Technology at Ofcom

Foundation Pharmacist Presentation: An Audit to Assess Venous Thromboembolism (VTE) Risk Assessment in Patients Aged 16-17 Years Old

Rachel Fixter
Foundation Pharmacist
The Newcastle upon Tyne Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust

Foundation Pharmacist Presentation: Audit of documentation and duration of extended post-operative thromboprophylaxis within General Surgery

Kimberly Mupfukudzwa
Foundation Pharmacist
Sunderland Royal Hospital

Foundation Pharmacist Presentation: Optimizing pharmaceutical usage in patient-controlled analgesia: A sustainable approach towards reducing waste and costs

Hooria Adnan
Foundation Pharmacist
North Cumbria Integrated Care


Clinical Breakout Sessions

Drugs in Pregnancy

Paula Russell, Principal Pharmacist, Regional Drug and Therapeutics Centre
Dr Luke Richardson, Principal Medical Information Scientist and Data Manager, UKTIS

An interactive session on the topic of prescribing in pregnancy addressing common questions about the safe use of medicines in pregnancy. We will also cover a case study and provide an overview of how to look at and interpret evidence and research data on medicines in pregnancy.


Is community pharmacy clinical? Busting the myth

Kim Whitehouse, Chair, Community Pharmacy North East North

How Pharmacy First has been implemented and the focus on women’s health, e.g. UTI, Contraceptive Services, Blood pressure monitoring.


The clinical breakout sessions will be chaired by Helen O’Neil, Senior Medicines Optimisation Pharmacist – Tees Valley, NECS



Leadership Breakout Sessions

How to think strategically

Julie Swaddle, Chief Pharmacist, South Tees Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust

Strategic thinking is the process of creating plans, objectives and actions that will result in long-term results.

It is a key skill that leaders need to have in order to succeed in the ever-changing landscape of the NHS, but it is often an area that is not prioritised. In this session, we will discuss how to enhance your strategic thinking skills by questioning the status quo, challenging your own and other ideas, and encouraging different perspectives to enhance your success and efficiency in the workplace as a leader.


The evolving role of pharmacy technicians – research leadership

Helen Dunn, Lead Pharmacy Technician (Clinical Trials) and Honorary Pharmacy Lead, South Tees Hospitals NHS FT/NIHR CRN

The session will cover:

  • The role of pharmacy technicians in clinical trials and research and how this role has evolved
  • Overview of my leadership journey and challenges faced
  • Current landscape for pharmacy leadership in clinical trials and research for the North-East and North Cumbria region (NENC)
  • How pharmacy technician leadership enables an effective clinical trials and research service
  • Getting involved in research


The leadership breakout sessions will be chaired by Janet Green, CNTW, former secondment lead tech in NHS England


Research Breakout Sessions


Advancing your career through research

Sinéad Greener, Joint Workforce Development Lead and Paediatric Pharmacist, The Newcastle upon Tyne Hospitals NHS FT and Rachel Berry, Advanced Medicines, Optimisation Pharmacist, NENC ICB

In this session we will be discussing how research, as one of the four pillars of practice, is essential in our career development. We want to think about work we currently do with audits and quality improvement projects – are we maximising output for patient benefit, or could we expand how we do it?  Research can open up opportunities in our careers and enhance job satisfaction as well as improve patient care; We will highlight opportunities for research within pharmacy, and discuss how these can be accessed.  Group discussion on the barriers and enablers to research will be facilitated and will help shape future regional plans in this area.  Attendees will be encouraged to consider their research journey and their possible next steps.


Pharmacy professionals in research – it could be you!

Laura Stavert, Advanced Pharmacist Practitioner, Northumberland Older Adult Community Treatment Teams, Cumbria, Northumberland, Tyne & Wear NHS Foundation Trust

Despite the potential for contributing to clinical research only a minority of the pharmacy workforce are currently research active. Pharmacy is an underrepresented discipline with research funders when compared with other healthcare professions such as medicine and nursing. A recent report commissioned by the Chief Pharmaceutical Officer for England and Wales established from pharmacy professionals that a lack of support is a prominent barrier to both involvement in research and the pursuit of clinical academic pharmacy careers.


So how can we buck this trend to encourage and support more pharmacy professionals to become more research active? This session will explore the opportunities available to support pharmacy professionals to get into research through the experience of a pharmacist who has recently completed an NIHR pre-doctoral clinical academic fellowship. Learn about the opportunities available to you to turn your bright ideas into tangible research proposals and unlock your potential in research!



The research breakout sessions will be chaired by Dr Anna Robinson-Barella, Lecturer in Clinical Pharmacy and Health Inequalities, Newcastle University


Education Breakout Sessions


Your profession needs you! what’s stopping you becoming a DPP?

Alison Sampson, Head of Foundation School, School of Pharmacy and Medicines Optimisation-North East and Yorkshire

Currently Designated Prescribing Practitioners (DPPs) from a number of professional backgrounds are required to support prescribing training for those undertaking post-graduate prescribing qualifications. In 2021 the General Pharmaceutical Council issued new standards for the initial education and training of pharmacists which require Foundation Trainee Pharmacists to be annotated as independent prescribers at the point of registration. Prescribing represents a significant change in the expectations of Foundation training which requires identification, supervision, and assessment by a suitable DPPs from 2025/26. This has increased DPP requirements to support training of prescribers.

This session will support attendees consider the role of pharmacists as Designated Prescribing Practitioners and provide some context from a wider multiprofessional workforce perspective to their current thinking.


Rapid teaching tools for workplace teaching

Dr David Thewlis, Module Leader, Newcastle University

This session will examine the common pressures associated with teaching in clinical environments and approaches which delegates can take to make their teaching more impactful for the learner and less intimidating to the educator. A world café approach will be used to identify and address the common barriers which colleagues encounter, and some simple tools will be shared which can be taken into everyday practice.



The education sessions will be chaired by Martina Khundakar, Lead Pharmacist, Cumbria, Northumberland, Tyne & Wear NHS Foundation Trust and Dr Kalliopi Dodou, Head of Pharmaceutics / Associate Professor, School of Health & Life Sciences, Teesside University

Foundation and Trainee Pharmacist Breakout Session

Laura Tweddle

Laura is Senior Clinical Pharmacy Manager & Workforce Development Lead at South Tees Hospitals and has worked for the Trust since 2015 in an array of roles all involving Education & Training. Laura recognised her passion for education and staff development and gained a certificate in medical education from Newcastle University in 2016. Laura is the Educational Programme Director for the Trainee Pharmacist Programme and has extensive involvement with Trainee Pharmacist training and development both within her organisation, and across the region. Laura also has an interest in undergraduate pharmacy placements in the hospital sector and is working on a research proposal in this field. Laura has been an active part of the Great North Pharmacy Research Collaborative Conference Committee for the past five years and is passionate to support early careers pharmacists and pharmacy technicians with training and development to enhance the pharmacy workforce across the region. Laura has a clinical background in paediatrics in which she undertook her independent prescribing qualification in 2015.

Clinical Breakout Sessions


Helen O’Neil

Chair: Helen O’Neil
Senior Medicines Optimisation Pharmacist – Tees Valley NECS

Helen is a Senior Medicines Optimisation Pharmacist in Tees Valley and strategically leads on diabetes for the North East and North Cumbria (NENC). Helen is Co-Chair of the UK Clinical Pharmacy Association Diabetes and Endocrinology Committee. Recently, Helen has moved from working in secondary care into primary care, and is keen to promote integrated care.

Helen has a passion for working with older people, and her previous research and publications have involved patients living with both diabetes and frailty. She recently completed a clinical research fellowship with the NIHR Applied Research Collaboration NENC, focusing on diabetes and frailty, and she remains an Associate Researcher at Newcastle University.

@NHSnecs     @HelenOneil80


Paula Russell

Paula Russell
Principal Pharmacist
Regional Drug and Therapeutics Centre

Paula has worked at the Regional Drug and Therapeutics Centre (RDTC) since February 2003. She has supported and led the RDTC MI service and also supported the National Poisons Information Service (NPIS) and UK Teratology Information Service (UKTIS), where she developed a specialist interest in the use of drugs in pregnancy.  She has held several pharmacy leadership positions involving secondments to NHS England and Service Level Agreements from her substantive role as Principal Pharmacist at the RDTC. These include being Pharmacist Lead for the Integrating Pharmacy and Medicines Optimisation into the North Cumbria and North East ICS Pilot, National NHS 111 Pharmacy Lead, Pharmacy Advisor to North East Ambulance Service for 8 years and North East lead pharmacist for NHS Direct for 11 years.  She continues to use her experience in pre-hospital care as National Pharmaceutical Advisor to the British Red Cross as a volunteer. She worked in community pharmacy before moving to hospital pharmacy both here and in Ireland.

@RDTC_Rx    @PaulaPharm

Dr Luke Richardson

Dr Jonathan Luke Richardson
Principal Medical Information Scientist and Data Manager

Luke has worked at the Regional Drug and Therapeutics Centre (RDTC) since 2009, completing a PhD with the UK Teratology Information Service (UKTIS) where he investigated novel methods of teratogen surveillance. Prior to joining the RDTC, he completed his undergraduate degree in Pharmacology at the University of Liverpool in 2008. Working at UKTIS, Luke’s main research interests include improving UKTIS data collection techniques, international collaborative approaches for pregnancy drug safety studies through the use of common data models, and developing academic standards in data collection, data synthesis and risk communication for pregnancy drug safety. Luke is currently working on an international project (IMI ConcePTION) aiming to improve medication in pregnancy data quality, and access to this data for patients and healthcare providers.

@medsinpregnancy   @JLRMedsInPreg


Kim Whitehouse

Kim Whitehouse
Community Pharmacy North East North


Leadership Breakout Sessions


Janet Green

Chair: Janet Green
Chief Pharmacy Technician
Cumbria, Northumberland, Tyne & Wear NHS Foundation Trust

I currently hold the position of Chief Pharmacy Technician in Cumbria, Northumberland, Tyne & Wear NHS FT and have been employed in varied positions which have enhanced my career and developed my personal skills.

In secondary care I have been involved in a number of workstreams including operational and clinical services, aseptic services, non sterile manufacturing, workforce development and education and training. I have significant experience in leadership and change management, stakeholder management and leading teams.

In May 2023 I was offered a secondment from NHS England to the position of Lead for Pharmacy Technician training in North East and Yorkshire. Throughout the year I was integral in the development of the national Pharmacy Technician Strategy (launched in May 2024) and supporting the growth of the Pharmacy Technician workforce in all sectors of Pharmacy.



Julie Swaddle

Julie Swaddle
Chief Pharmacist
South Tees Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust

Julie is the Chief Pharmacist at South Tees NHS Foundation Trust where she has been in post since 2016. At the organisation she also is the Collaborative Chair for Clinical Support Services including the Pathology, Radiology and Medical Physics departments.

Julie is from the North East where she started her career as a rotational pharmacist before moving to her first leadership role within the private hospital sector. Here she worked developing strategy both locally and nationally for the company whilst also practicing as an independent prescriber in Oncology and Pain Management specialities. Within her career she has also undertaken many roles within the NHS including Medication Safety Officer, Clinical Pharmacy Manager and Deputy Chief Pharmacist before becoming Chief.  Julie also sits as a member of the Acute Providers Pharmacy Advisory Group (APPAG) representing the North East on a national level.


Helen Dunn

Helen Dunn
Lead Pharmacy Technician (Clinical Trials) and Honorary Pharmacy Lead
South Tees Hospitals NHS FT/NIHR CRN

Helen qualified as a pharmacy technician in 2003 and has worked in various dispensary, clinical, aseptics, and system management pharmacy roles, before specialising as lead technician for clinical trials in 2009. Helen is a trained GCP facilitator and delivers research training across her organisation and NENC region. Helen is also an Honorary Pharmacy Lead for the NIHR regional clinical trials network. This role provides leadership for championing research, supporting pharmacy colleagues across the region and imparts the research network with professional advice. Helen has recently been appointed as Chair for the national NIHR Pharmacy Working Group. The group brings together collective expertise of UK pharmacy clinical trials staff and key subject matter experts to ensure efficient set-up and delivery of research studies. Helen is passionate about improving patient outcomes and progressing pharmacy input into clinical research.

@SouthTees   @NIHRCRN_NENCumb


Research Breakout Sessions


Dr Anna Robinson-Barella

Chair:Dr Anna Robinson-Barella
Lecturer in Clinical Pharmacy and Health Inequalities
Newcastle University

Anna is a Lecturer in Clinical Pharmacy and Health- and Medicines- Inequality at Newcastle School of Pharmacy. She is also a Specialist Clinical Pharmacist, with a wealth of experience working in Primary and Secondary care settings across the North-East of England. Anna’s research interests lie in working with minoritised and vulnerable communities. In particular, Anna’s research seeks to target medicines- and health- inequalities. Alongside her role in pharmacy research, Anna leads the second year of the MPharm programme at Newcastle School of Pharmacy.

@UniofNewcastle       @AnnaRobPharm


Sinéad Greener

Sinéad Greener
Joint Workforce Development Lead and Paediatric Pharmacist
The Newcastle upon Tyne Hospitals NHS FT

Sinéad is a Workforce Development Lead and Paediatric Pharmacist at The Newcastle upon Tyne Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust, where she has worked as a clinical pharmacist for over 14 years. Sinéad studied at Robert Gordon University in Aberdeen before undertaking her Pre-registration training in St Marys Hospital in London.

While at Newcastle, Sinéad developed a specialist interest in Paediatric Bone Marrow Transplantation which has fuelled Sinéad’s interest in research. Sinéad has been actively involved in obtaining funding for pharmacy staff to undertake formal research training. She is a member of many research groups including the Great North Pharmacy Research Collaborative Group, Newcastle Health Innovations Partnership Academy Pillars Group, Northeast North Cumbria Pharmacy Strategic Leaders Working Group and Northeast North Cumbria Community of Practice. Sinéad has completed a NIHR Internship and published her experience of the difficulty of navigating the field of research as a clinical pharmacist.

@NuTHPharm   @NewcastleHosps


Rachel Berry

Rachel Berry
Advanced Medicines Optimisation Pharmacist

Rachel is an Advanced Medicines Optimisation Pharmacist working in the North East and North Cumbria Integrated Care Board (NENC ICB).  She has a lead role in the strategic management of antimicrobial use and the management of chronic pain across the region and has published papers and articles in both these fields.  She has a keen interest in research and quality improvement and has undertaken an NIHR research internship to expand these skills.  By applying these she has enabled her team to be recognised nationally for quality improvement work, including being short-listed for a national Health Services Journal Award in 2018, being awarded a national PrescQIPP award in 2019, and being short-listed for the National Antibiotic Guardian Award in 2023.  Rachel has recently been offered a place on the Chief Pharmaceutical Officer’s Clinical Fellowship Scheme for 2024-25, and she is passionate about expanding similar opportunities for pharmacy professionals across all sectors.


Laura Stavert

Laura Stavert
Advanced Pharmacist Practitioner
Northumberland Older Adult Community Treatment Teams
Cumbria, Northumberland, Tyne & Wear NHS Foundation Trust

Laura is an Advanced Pharmacist Practitioner with Cumbria, Northumberland, Tyne & Wear NHS Foundation Trust. She completed her undergraduate degree in 2009 at The Robert Gordon University, Aberdeen and thereafter pre-registration training at the Royal Infirmary of Edinburgh.

Laura has worked in various mental health pharmacy roles since joining CNTW in 2012. Specialising in old age psychiatry since 2016, she has held her current advanced pharmacist practitioner post in old age community mental health services since 2018.

Laura has a special interest in practice research and in 2023 completed her master’s in clinical research (University of Manchester) after being awarded an NIHR pre-doctoral clinical academic fellowship. Her research interests include deprescribing and medicines optimisation in people with dementia, carer involvement, shared decision-making, and pharmacy workforce wellbeing. Laura is currently writing a doctoral research proposal and plans to apply for doctoral fellowship funding to pursue her PhD research at Newcastle University.


Education Breakout Sessions


Martina Khundakar

Chair: Martina Khundakar
Lead Pharmacist
Cumbria, Northumberland, Tyne & Wear NHS Foundation Trust

Martina is Lead Pharmacist for Research and Workforce Development in Cumbria, Northumberland, Tyne and Wear NHS Foundation Trust with 20 years of NHS experience in mental health. She is a passionate advocate for the education of pharmacy professionals and currently oversees the coordination and delivery of educational programs for university placements, trainee pharmacists and rotational placements in mental health with acute trusts across the North-East and North Cumbria.

Martina plays a central role in promoting staff development pathways and innovative roles within her department. She has led various workforce initiatives, steering pharmacy workforce development and education to foster collaboration of staff to work more closely together across the system for the benefit of those with a serious mental illness (SMI). This systemwide approach aims to reduce parity of esteem, promoting safer care and improved medicines optimisation for people with SMI.

Martina is an independent prescriber and actively engaged in clinical practice and supports the trust’s medical education team with responsibility for integrating pharmacists into this team. In 2015, she completed a Postgraduate Certificate in Medical Education and currently serves as an associate lecturer at Newcastle University.

@martmixx   @CNTWNHS


Dr Kalliopi Dodou

Chair: Dr Kalliopi Dodou
Head of Pharmaceutics / Associate Professor
School of Health & Life Sciences
Teesside University

Kalli has a First-Class Honours BSc in Pharmacy (1999), a PhD in Medicinal Chemistry (2004) and a Postgraduate Diploma in Teaching and Learning in Higher Education (2008). I am a member of the Royal Pharmaceutical Society of Great Britain, registered with the GPhC, and a Fellow of the Royal Society of Chemistry (FRSC). I am currently Head of Pharmaceutics at Teesside University (since January 2024) where alongside the Director of Pharmacy I play a significant role in the development and establishment of the School of Pharmacy via the development of innovative curricula for the MPharm (Pharmacy@TU) programme, in line with the new Standards of Education as set by the General Pharmaceutical Council. I am also contributing to the assembly of a team of expert, research-led educators, focused on delivering skilled, resilient graduates, ready to deliver impact across the Tees Valley and beyond. Before my current role, I was at the University of Sunderland for 20 years (2004-2024) where based on market/industrial demand I designed and established two new innovative, industry-driven, and hugely profitable courses; the BSc Cosmetic Science (2016) and the MSc Cosmetic Science (2020) from validation, curriculum design, to programme leadership, marketing, and admissions.

@TeessideUni    @KalliDodouPhD


Alison Sampson

Alison Sampson
Head of Foundation School
School of Pharmacy and Medicines Optimisation-North East and Yorkshire

After graduating in Liverpool and qualifying as a pharmacist in Leeds, Alison undertook a variety of generalist and specialist hospital roles in Derbyshire and Yorkshire followed by Clinical Pharmacy Services management roles in the North-East.

Alison advocated the wider use of the pharmacy workforce in service delivery, publishing, and winning awards for practice research.

Opportunity to further extend patient care through prescribing, Alison led the Department of Health regional strategic implementation and development of prescribing across all professions. After leading Modernising Scientific Careers for Yorkshire and the Humber, Alison supported regional pharmacy education commissioning and workforce development. Following a CPPE Education Supervisor role, Alison has returned to NHS England to lead Foundation Trainee Pharmacist education and training reform in the North East and Yorkshire region as Head of Foundation School.


Dr David Thewlis

Dr David Thewlis
Module Leader
Newcastle University

David Thewlis is a lecturer in Medical Education at Newcastle University. He qualified in medicine from Newcastle, and worked for several years in clinical practice focusing on geriatrics and then general practice. He stepped into education full time in 2017 at the University of Birmingham MBChB during which time he lead on healthcare ethics, assessments and anything else thrown at him. He moved to Newcastle University to teach on the Masters of Medical Education in 2022 and leads on the “Teaching and Learning in the Workplace” and “Assessments in Medical Education” modules. His particular academic interests are around radical engaged pedagogies and the understanding of self-determination when applied to the development of healthcare professionals. In his spare time he can be found on the Judo mat.


Venue information

Venue: Hilton Hotel Newcastle Gateshead, Bottle Bank, Gateshead. NE8 2AR

Arriving at the venue

Please make your way to the Gateshead Suite on the ground floor.

Travelling to the venue

The hotel is located overlooking the Tyne Bridge and is less than a mile from Gateshead metro station and eight minutes from the A1 motorway. It is approximately a fifteen-minute walk from Newcastle Central Station

Event parking

There is parking onsite.

Please visit the link below for all parking options


There isn’t a dedicated cycle rack at the venue. Bikes can be secured to the railings in the underground car park. This is at your own risk. Changing facilities are available at the venue, please go to reception on arrival.

Rail and Metro

The Hotel is less than a mile from Gateshead metro station and approximately a fifteen-minute walk from Newcastle Central Station


For hotel suggestions please visit:

  • The conference will be paperless (as much as possible) without compromising elements of the event (ie poster display)
  • Delegate badges have all been used previously and will be collected at the end of the conference. Inserts will be recycled
  • We have requested that all posters be printed on uncoated/recycled paper. All posters left at the venue can then be recycled.
  • No delegate packs will be available, all information is on the event resource page on our website
  • The conference lunch will be meat free
  • We have asked all exhibitors to be mindful when preparing materials for their stands
  • Post-event the Hilton Hotel will pull together all our event info and work out the Carbon Footprint for the event and then offset that value by making a comparable donation to South Pole Project.
  • We have requested mugs where possible for refreshments and any snacks be free of packaging.

Join the conversation

Please follow us on Twitter @GtNorthPharmRes #GNPRC2024 to join the conversation.

Please join the Facebook group

Please make a member of the event team aware if you do not wish to have your photograph taken during the course of this event or appear in film footage.

Photographs and film footage could appear on social media and websites

For further information about the conference or to discuss accessibility concerns please contact [email protected]