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Dr Helen Howlett

Senior Lecturer

Department: Nursing, Midwifery & Health

Helen Howlett is a dual registered Nurse and Midwife. She has the benefit of diverse clinical experience gained in variety of specialties over three decades of nursing and midwifery. She has managed several multidisciplinary teams and from this, learned and embedded many effective and innovative professional practices. Helen has a proven track record of building on the success of an organisation and developing research culture, capacity, and practice. Helen won the prestigious NIHR 70@70 Nurse and Midwife Research Leadership Award as a result of her work embedding a research culture across the NHS. She also won the NIHR Green Shoots award in recognition of her work as Principal Investigator on reproductive health clinical trials. Helen’s clinical background and her active research and educational roles means that she is familiar with the landscape and strategic imperatives within which academia, the NIHR and NHS operate.

She has experience of educating and training nurses, midwives and doctors at all levels to develop their research skills, to support practice development, professional education and to maintain clinical excellence. Helen is also trained in Cognitive Behavioural Therapy, Solution Focused Therapy and Hypnobirthing.  

 

Helen Howlett

Helen is the leading national midwife researcher and expert in FASD and alcohol in pregnancy. As a result, she has an international profile and collaborates with NICE, Public Health England, Balance, and multiple universities across the UK. She is a founding member of the UK FASD Research Collaboration, which provides a network to share information between groups researching the areas of prenatal alcohol exposure and Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorders, and lobbies for the increased provision of research funding in this area. Helen is also part of a regional team that provides training and education to families and all health, social care, education, and criminal justice-related professionals.

Helen’s portfolio of research culminated in her Ph.D. by Publication titled ‘Building a case for a standardised antenatal alcohol screening programme in the UK.’ Better Births, Local Maternity System, and the Integrated Care System now incorporate this new evidence which is driving changes in practice throughout the region and nationally, helping prevent future alcohol-related harms to improve the outcomes of women and their babies.

  • Please visit the Pure Research Information Portal for further information
  • Fetal alcohol spectrum disorders: An overview of current evidence and activities in the UK, Schölin, L., Mukherjee, R., Aiton, N., Blackburn, C., Brown, S., Flemming, K., Gard, P., Howlett, H., Plant, M., Price, A., Shields, J., Smith, L., Suttie, M., Zammitt, D., Cook, P. 1 Jul 2021, In: Archives of Disease in Childhood
  • An antenatal alcohol service evaluation of the north-east of England and north Cumbria, Howlett, H. 18 Feb 2020, In: Journal of Public Health
  • Assessing the prevalence of alcohol consumption in early pregnancy using blood biomarker analysis: a consistent pattern across north-east England?, Howlett, H., Mackenzie, S., Gray, W., Rankin, J., Nixon, L., Brown, N. 28 Feb 2020, In: Journal of Public Health
  • A Survey of Health Care Professionals’ Knowledge and Experience of Foetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorder and Alcohol Use in Pregnancy, Howlett, H., Mackenzie, S., Strehle, E., Rankin, J., Gray, W. 27 Mar 2019, In: Clinical Medicine Insights: Reproductive Health
  • Prenatal alcohol exposure and fetal alcohol spectrum disorder: A clinical perspective, Howlett, H. 12 Sep 2019
  • Assessing prevalence of alcohol consumption in early pregnancy: Self-report compared to blood biomarker analysis, Howlett, H., Mackenzie, S., Gray, W., Rankin, J., Nixon, L., Richardson, A., Strehle, E., Brown, N. Sep 2018, In: European Journal of Medical Genetics
  • North East and Cumbria LMS Boards Regional Alcohol Use in Pregnancy Audit, Howlett, H. 1 Sep 2018
  • A survey of attitudes, beliefs and practice regarding alcohol use and screening in pregnancy: an opportunity for support and education?, Howlett, H., Gray, W., Dismore, L., Mackenzie, S., Langley, K., Davison, C., Rankin, J. Dec 2017, In: Journal of Research in Nursing
  • How strong is the evidence for using blood biomarkers alone to screen for alcohol consumption during pregnancy? A systematic review, Howlett, H., Abernethy, S., Brown, N., Rankin, J., Gray, W. 1 Jun 2017, In: European Journal of Obstetrics & Gynecology and Reproductive Biology
  • A mixed methods study to assess the feasibility of a randomised controlled trial of invasive urodynamic testing versus clinical assessment and non-invasive tests prior to surgery for stress urinary incontinence in women: The INVESTIGATE-I study, Hilton, P., Armstrong, N., Brennand, C., Howel, D., Shen, J., Bryant, A., Tincello, D., Lucas, M., Buckley, B., Chapple, C., Homer, T., Vale, L., McColl, E., Howlett, H. 8 Sep 2015, In: Trials

  • Please visit the Pure Research Information Portal for further information
  • Oral presentation: A Survey of Health Care Professionals’ Knowledge and Experience of Foetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorder and Alcohol Use in Pregnancy. 2018
  • Oral presentation: Exploring the feasibility and clinical effectiveness of antenatal alcohol screening to clinicians, pregnant women and their partners 2018
  • Oral presentation: A Survey of Health Care Professionals’ Knowledge and Experience of Foetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorder and Alcohol Use in Pregnancy. 2018
  • Oral presentation: Assessing prevalence of alcohol consumption in early pregnancy: Self-report compared to blood biomarker analysis. 2018
  • Oral presentation: Assessing prevalence of alcohol consumption in early pregnancy: Self-report compared to blood biomarker analysis. 2017
  • Oral presentation: A survey of attitudes, belief and practice regarding alcohol use and screening in pregnancy: an opportunity for support and education? 2017
  • Oral presentation: A survey of attitudes, belief and practice regarding alcohol use and screening in pregnancy: an opportunity for support and education? 2017
  • Oral presentation: Research and evidence based practice 2016
  • Oral presentation: Prevalence survey of alcohol consumption at antenatal booking in pregnancy; comparing blood biomarker analysis to self-report. 2016
  • Oral presentation: Prevalence survey of alcohol consumption at antenatal booking in pregnancy; comparing blood biomarker analysis to self-report. 2016

  • PGCFHE January 28 2022
  • Midwifery PhD July 21 2021
  • Nursing MA (Hons) October 01 2014
  • Midwifery BSc (Hons) April 01 1998
  • Nursing DipHE September 02 1996
  • Fellow of the Higher Education Academy FHEA 2020
  • Registered Nurse and Midwife Nursing and Midwifery Council (NMC) 1992


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