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Helen McDonald


Clinical Assistant Professor

Theme 1 - Making the most of real-world data

London School of Hygiene & Tropical Medicine

Helen McDonald is a clinical epidemiologist and honorary consultant in public health.

She first joined the NHS as a nursing auxiliary, then studied medicine at St John's College, Cambridge (intercalating in Philosophy) and Green College, Oxford. She was a clinical advisor to the Chief Medical Officer from 2007 to 2008, and worked as part of a team which developed national quality and safety policies and managed the development of a WHO curriculum guide to patient safety in medical schools. She trained in public health, working across a variety of organisations including the Department of Health (health inequalities), NHS England (London), local authority, and local health protection in North West London.

At LSHTM, following a masters degree in Epidemiology she completed a PhD in the epidemiology of infections among older people with diabetes mellitus and chronic kidney disease, supervised by Dorothea Nitsch and Sara Thomas and funded by Kidney Research UK. She now co-leads Theme 1 'Making the most of real-world data' of the NIHR Health Protection Research Unit in Immunisation, together with Prof Nick Andrews at Public Health England.