2016 - Strength in Numbers Conference, Thursday June 23
Meet our presenters

Clea Bruun Johansen, Psychologist & diabetes education researcher, Steno Diabetes Center, Denmark

Clea is currently working on a PhD in Steno Diabetes Center in Denmark, on the role of family for emerging adults with type 1 diabetes. The aim of the study is to develop an intervention that targets psychological wellbeing of the family as a social unit and diabetes self-care of the emerging adult. Clea’s background is in clinical psychology where she has been working with diabetes related issues. One important clinical issue has been how to support everyday wellbeing of young people and Clea has supervised health professionals on communication in diabetes care. The link between psychology and communication is a general interest of hers. Clea has written two books for adolescents and has edited a radio programme on Health Psychology. In 2013 she published the first Danish language handbook on diabetes psychology: “A better life with diabetes”. Since 2011 Clea has gradually moved into full time research.

Barbara Johnson, University of Sheffield & CLAHRC YH, NIHR, UK

Barbara Johnson works as a researcher and project manager for the WICKED (Working with Insulin, Carbohydrates, Ketones and Exercise to manage Type 1 Diabetes) study - a NIHR funded study part of CLAHRC (Collaboration for Leadership in Applied Health Research and Care), Yorkshire and Humber. Barbara has a background in health psychology and worked on the initial development of the WICKED educational intervention for young adults with Type 1 diabetes, its evaluation and the extended pilot in other centres in Yorkshire. 

Will Hadfield, Registered Dietitian specialising in Diabetes, Kings College Hospital, UK

Will is a Registered Dietitian specialising in Diabetes, with nearly 10 years experience in the NHS, research and private sector.

Will’s main NHS role is at King’s College Hospital internationally renowned Diabetes Centre working with young adults with Diabetes (Transition). Will is a qualified DAFNE educator, with a great passion for innovative education and long-term behavior change running throughout his work. Personal and group consultations make up the majority of his work, enabling tailored evidence-based nutritional advice to be translated into practical and sustainable daily actions for individuals and families. Using technology, building peer support and utilising multimedia facilitate this work.

Will’s other interests include volunteering on the British Dietetic Association Diabetes Specialist Group; which educates, empowers and engages with Dietitians working in the field of Diabetes. Other volunteer roles are with Diabetes UK, The Food Chain and B-Eat.

Dr Rosie Webster, specialist in health psychology and digital technology interventions, UK

With a background in Health Psychology, Rosie specialises in creating interventions and resources to support behaviour change, particularly using digital media. Working at the UK’s largest breast cancer charity, Breast Cancer Now, she works on creating tools and resources to help women reduce their risk of breast cancer. Rosie has extensive experience in the user-led design of evidence- and theory-based digital health tools.

Robert Cooke, IT Delivery Director for Community Health, Ehealth Ireland

Robert Cooke is the IT Delivery Director for Community Health with responsibility for the development of ICT strategy and services in support of the Mental Health, Social Care and Health and Wellbeing divisions.

With over 25 years change management and innovation experience delivering eGovernment solutions in large public sector organisations, Robert brings a wealth of experience to the team.

As well as a Masters in Healthcare Informatics Robert is PMI and Prince2 certified. Robert lectured in Systems Planning, Database Design and eHealth on the B.Sc. and BNS course in DCU and TCD for over 12 years. He has a particular research interest in ethics in information management which he also brings to his role as Delivery Director in the Office of the Chief Information Officer (OoCIO). 

Dr Elizabeth Dymond, Deputy Director of Enterprise, West of England Academic Health Science Network

Elizabeth is a medical engineer by background with extensive NHS experience in London, Lincoln and Bristol. She has set up technology based services in communication and control issues for adults and children with complex disabilities and also specialised in technologies for 24 hour ECG monitoring. Elizabeth is a Chartered Engineer and has a PhD from the University of Sheffield. Career highlights include a five week travel fellowship to USA awarded by the Institute of Physics & Engineering in Medicine. She has over 10 years’ experience in healthcare innovation and holds a Diploma in Innovation & Change Management from the Chartered Management Institute. Elizabeth’s most recent NHS role was as Innovation Manager at North Bristol NHS Trust and University Hospitals Bristol NHS Trust where she was responsible for licensing research outputs to pharma plus commercialising a range of assessment & educational tools developed by Trust staff. As Deputy Director of Enterprise at the West of England Academic Health Science Network, Elizabeth leads the Diabetes Digital Coach Test Bed with 11 company partners and contributes to the Enterprise team's impact in accelerating the generation and adoption of new innovations delivering:

·         £6m investment secured for joint development of innovative solutions between the region’s health services and industry

·         Bringing together 500+ people to discuss key healthcare priorities at networking events

·         14 collaboration projects have begun between health service providers, universities and industry

·         Over 120 companies received assistance in developing their healthcare ideas

Sarah Simkin, Manager, Jigsaw Galway, Ireland

Sarah Simkin has worked in Jigsaw Galway since it opened over seven years.  Jigsaw Galway is a primary care mental health service for young people (aged 15 - 25).  Sarah's role included the formation and facilitation of a Youth Advisory Panel who were involved in the design and development of the service.  Sarah is a graduate of the Postgraduate Diploma in Education and the Masters in Health Service Management.  Sarah has a keen interest in promoting help-seeking behaviour and designing services that are accessible, acceptable and appropriate.

Monica Mullins, a member of the D1 now study Young Adult Panel



Monica has been a member of the Young Adult Panel (YAP) for the past two and a half years. This D1 now study is focused on improving the care provided to young people living with type 1 diabetes (18-25 years). The D1 now study is a collaboration between a range of experts (including people like Monica living with diabetes) with the aim of developing a new approach to care, tailored to the specific needs of young adults with type 1 diabetes. Monica has 22 years experience living with type 1 diabetes. She has recently finished her undergraduate degree in Marine Science at NUI Galway.  


Prof John Gregory, Professor in Paediatric Endocrinology, Cardiff University, UK

John graduated from Dundee University and trained in paediatric diabetes in Sheffield, Dundee and Newcastle upon Tyne. He provides a diabetes service for approximately 235 children with diabetes living in Cardiff and leads a research programme investigating delivery of clinical care to children with diabetes. Research studies have been completed, evaluating communication skills training for healthcare professionals (Robling M et al. The DEPICTED Study. BMJ. 2012 Apr 26;344:e2359. doi: 10.1136/bmj.e2359), examining transition to adult services (Allen D et al. The TCADS Study. J Health Serv Res Policy. 2012 Jul;17(3):140-8. Epub 2012 Jul 5.), evaluating how children make choices about healthcare (The EPIC Study) and evaluating models of care for children at diagnosis (The DECIDE Study). He currently contributes to a randomised controlled trial of multiple daily injections with pumps (The SCIPI Study). John is co-author of Practical Endocrinology and Diabetes in Children, now being redrafted for its fourth edition. He has an interest in training paediatric endocrinologists and has been the European Society for Paediatric Endocrinology’s Coordinator for their Paediatric Endocrine Training Centres in Africa in Nairobi and Lagos and more recently their Winter School in Eastern Europe.

Liam McMorrow, University of Aberdeen, UK

Liam is in the final of year of his PhD in health economics at the University of Aberdeen investigating the determinants of food choices. Part of his PhD involved undertaken a discrete choice experiment to understand how taxing snack foods influences food choices. Liam is currently working with researchers at NUIG to design a discrete choice experiment to elicit young adults preferences for diabetes clinic care in Ireland. Also, his masters thesis also explored the economics type 1 diabetes in Ireland. Liam was diagnosed with type 1 diabetes in 2002 and currently uses an insulin pump. 

Dr David Chaney, National Director for Diabetes UK Northern Ireland

Dr David Chaney was appointed as National Director for Diabetes UK Northern Ireland in July 2015. Prior to this appointment he worked as the Senior Education Specialist at the International Diabetes Federation. Within his role at IDF he was responsible for the delivery diabetes education projects around the world. Previously David worked as a Lecturer in Nursing at Ulster University, he qualified as a staff nurse in 1992 and has worked within the area of diabetes care since 1994. He was awarded an MSc in Nursing in 2001 and subsequently completed a Postgraduate Diploma in Clinical Health Sciences Education both at Trinity College Dublin. David completed his PhD in 2010 within the area of structured diabetes education for adolescents between the ages of 13 – 19 years. David was awarded the Janet Kinson Named Lecture and Royal College of Nursing Northern Ireland Research Nurse of the Year for his work within education and diabetes.

Cathy Breen, Dietitian, St Columcille’s Hospital, Dublin

Cathy qualified from TCD/DIT with a BSc (Human Nutrition and Dietetics) in 2002. She has worked as a Senior Dietitian specialising in diabetes and weight management and DAFNE Educator in the Endocrine Service, St Columcille’s Hospital, Loughlinstown, Co Dublin since 2004.  She led the EFAD Diabetes Specialist Network from 2011-2013 and is currently the dietetic representative on the writing committee for the RCPI Adult Type 1 Diabetes Guidelines. She has recently completed her PhD which explored Type 2 diabetes patients’ understanding and use of carbohydrate in the management of their diabetes.

Mary O’Scannáil, Diabetes Specialist Nurse, St Columcille’s Hospital, Dublin

Mary has worked as a Diabetes Nurse Specialist and DAFNE Educator in the Endocrine Service, St Columcille’s Hospital, Loughlinstown, Co Dublin since 2000, having completed her H Dip (Diabetes Nursing) in 2002.  She has been a previous Chair of the Diabetes Ireland education group and a committee member of the Irish Diabetes Nurse Specialist Association. Her research interests include structured patient education in Type 1 diabetes, pump therapy and optimising young adult diabetes care.