Our Steering Group Members

Professor Andrew Grant


Andy Grant is Dean of Medical Education at Swansea University School of Medicine (SUMS).

He led the formation of the unit for the study of doctors and medical students’ mental health and wellbeing after recognising that (initially) medical students with mental health needs were not accessing the care and support that they need. This was while working as a final year director at Cardiff University Medical School. This, in turn led him to apply successfully for a research project commissioned by the GMC and to recognise the need for a UK-wide organisation that brought together the numerous people involved in supporting medical students and doctors.

Qualified in medicine Andy practises as a GP on a part-time basis and he leads the graduate entry medicine programme at Swansea University Medical School. Andy’s PhD was an examination of reflective learning in medical students.

Dr Debbie Cohen


Debbie is an Occupational Physician. She is Director of Student Support and Reader at Cardiff University. Debbie has both national and international recognition for her work on physician health and training in work and health for healthcare professionals. In 2012 Debbie received the OBE for her contribution to occupational medicine.

Dr Ana Sergio Da Silva

Lecturer and researcher in Medical Education at the Medical School, Swansea

Ana is currently a lecturer and researcher in Medical Education at the Swansea University Medical School. Ana is truly passionate about education and its transformative impact on people’s lives. She leads on the diploma year in the Masters in Education for Healthcare Professionals and is responsible for faculty development, personal tutors coordination, and some teaching of social sciences to medical students. Ana has a background in Educational and Social Sciences.

During her time working in medical education she has had the opportunity to work/research within several medical schools (in Portugal and the UK). Among other things she was responsible for a project to set up a clinical skills lab, provided consultancy to introduce a clinical reasoning assessment and has been in involved in a health workforce education reform project in the Pacific. She was also responsible for implementation of health promotion projects in schools, faculty development training and quality assurance in Higher Education.

Clinical reasoning and medical decision-making are amongst Ana’s key research interests and expertise, and is currently involved in several research projects and national groups in these areas. Ana is also a reviewer for some of the most important journals in this field.

Dr Duncan Shrewsbury


Duncan is an academic GP trainee (GPST2) working part-time as a lecturer in Clinical Education and Primary care at the University of Worcester.

Alongside his clinical and teaching commitments, Duncan is completing a PhD in medical education at the University of Exeter. His work focuses on the impact of dyslexia on the education and practice of doctors in training. Research activities, to date, have drawn on a wide range or methodologies, including qualitative methods from sociology, psychology and education, and mixed methods approaches. He has a background in teaching and learner support, and has led on initiatives that centre on the issues of doctors in difficulty, learners with mental health issues and learner wellbeing.

Whilst at medical school, Duncan developed a mindfulness-based programme to address stress management in medical students, which was evaluated and led to further work with the London Deanery’s coaching and mentoring team. Duncan continues his work in mentoring – both as a mentor, and as a lead for mentor training in the West Midlands.

Leona Walsh

BA, PGMDE, Wales Deanery, Cardiff University, Wales, UK

Following a career in Interpreting & Translation and working with vulnerable groups, I was seconded to the School of Postgraduate Medical & Dental Education (Wales Deanery) to work with Asylum Seeking and Refugee Doctors in 2001. My roles in the Wales Deanery since include managing International Medical Graduates, Specialty Training Recruitment and most recently Professional Support to doctors and dentists in training. I led projects such as the first UK National Recruitment, recruitment of doctors to Wales from abroad and the Remediation and Rehabilitation work-stream for Revalidation of Doctors in Wales.

I am an experienced trainer leading on educational activities to senior faculty in Wales in the area of recognition of issues affecting progression through medical and dental postgraduate training, maximising performance, performance support, mentoring and wellbeing.

My recent Certificate in Occupational Health Law enables me to advise and operate safely in the areas of occupational health, health and safety, disability and employment law. I have trained in Resilience / Trauma Risk Management (TRiM), I am certified in Realise 2 (strength based assessment and development tool), a qualified Mentor and a NLP Practitioner. I am currently working towards LLM in Employment Law to expand my knowledge in this area.

My training and experience enable me to work with individuals to unlock potential through realising their strengths to achieve goals.

Peter Winter


Peter Winter is an ESRC-funded PhD Student at the Department of Sociological Studies, University of Sheffield.

Peter was Research Assistant on a GMC-funded project which examined the provision of support for medical students with mental illness and is currently involved in its dissemination. With a background in Social Science Research Methods and interests in Science, Technology Studies (STS) and radiology/radiography education he is currently researching radiological vision in medicine and radiography.

Clare Owen

Policy Adviser at the Medical Schools Council

Clare is a Policy Adviser at the Medical Schools Council. Prior to starting at the MSC in 2013 Clare worked as an Education Policy Manager at the General Medical Council where she led on the development of the joint GMC and MSC guidance on supporting students with mental health conditions. During her time at the GMC Clare worked on numerous policy projects including the review of Tomorrow’s Doctors 2009 and the review of the routes to GP and specialist registration.

The MSC is the representative body for UK medical schools and Clare focuses on the education aspect of medical schools’ work. Her particular focus is on selection and widening participation and she led the Selecting for Excellence for project which concluded with a final report which was launched in December 2015. Clare also does extensive work on student fitness to practice and student support and has recently been involved in the review of the joint GMC and MSC guidance Medical Students: professional values and fitness to practice.

Clare also provides policy support to the Pharmacy Schools Council, Veterinary Schools Council and the Dental Schools Council.

Andrew Rix

Andrew Rix is a retired Chartered Occupational Psychologist who has been involved in organisational research for forty years. He has worked in universities and the private sector and has carried out studies on behalf of most government departments in the UK. In the last few years he has been active in health related research, especially into patient centred care and the systems needed to support it. He was a co-applicant, with Professor Andrew Grant; on the GMC study about medical student mental health. He has contributed to several published papers about the topic of institutional responses to regulation and is currently engaged as a co-applicant, through the Unit, in a study which looks at the support needed by junior doctors who suffer from mental health issues. He is currently involved in two other mental health projects, both relating to young people and he sits on a number of advisory groups, which are developing interventions to promote patient centred care. He has recently become the Independent Chair of the Delivery Board of Health and Care Research Wales, which has responsibility for promoting public involvement in health and social care research in Wales as well as safeguarding the interests of those who do become involved.