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    I am a Professor of Applied Health and Social Care. My research has focused on the development, implementation and testing of healthcare interventions using a range of mixed design and qualitative methods. I joined Northumbria in September 2018 as Associate Professor of Applied Health and Social Care. Prior to this I worked as a Senior Research Fellow in the Public Health Section of ScHARR at the University of Sheffield and in the Translating Knowledge to Action theme (CLAHRC Yorkshire and Humber). Prior to joining the University of Sheffield I was a Senior Research Fellow (Qualitative) at the ARUK Primary Care Centre, Keele University (2010-14) where I conducted studies investigating the implementation of musculoskeletal care interventions, largely within large trials in primary care (STarT Back Tool). Between 2005 and 2010 I was a Lecturer in Medical Sociology at the Division of Primary Care, University of Manchester, and prior to this I was an NHS Executive Post Doctoral Research Training Fellow (2002-2005) under the supervision of Professor Stephen Harrison (University of Manchester), where I conducted a three year ethnographic research study of professional boundaries in the management of heart failure, culminating in a paper on 'professional legitimacy claims' in the Journal Sociology of Health & Illness (2008). Prior to this I held several research positions including as Research Associate (Cardiff University, University of Bristol), and a PhD Studentship funded by the Medical Research Council (University of Bristol/Bath, 1995-199) where I conducted an ethnography in decision-making in oncology (bowel cancer). I hold a Masters in Medical Sociology and a BA degree in Sociology. 

    Prevously I have served on the NIHR PGfAR funding Committee (2017-2022), Health Sub Committee of the Arthritis Research UK (now Versus Arthritis, 2018-2021), and currently I am a member of the NIHR RfPB Funding Panel. I am the Programme Lead for the BSc Health and Social Care, University Faculty Representative on the Committee for Responsible Research Assessment, and honorary senior research fellow at the School of Health and Related Research, University of Sheffield.

    I have a longstanding interest in cancer care, namely the delivery of services and patient experiences. I have also conducted studies on patients and healthcare professionals in the context of muskuloskeletal conditions, Type 1 Diabetes (young adults), heart failure, help seeking behaviours by people prior to a cancer diagnosis. I have also conducted studies on risk perceptions among people with first degree relatives with cancer, and on non-accidental head injuries in young children culminating in a book (2006). Currently, I am a co-investigator on a primary care trial (NIHR HSDR) testing a new symptoms clinic in primary care for medically persistent symptoms, and a co-investigator on an NIHR Programme Grant to develop a digital intervention for fatigue in people with multiple sclerosis. Here I lead the qualitative and implementation research workpackages and supervise several researchers. Recent completed research includes a qualitative study and toolkit development for personalised care following hospital discharge (2022-2023), evaluation of the diabetes prevention programme, (health economic modelling tool for diabetes prevention, 2016-18), and a study investigating optimal models of care for post partum weight management (2017-18).

    My research has been funded by NIHR (HSDR, PGfAR, HTA), NIHR NSPCR (National School for Primary Care Research), VONNE, and CLAHRC.


  • Medical Sociology

    Understanding standardised tools and interventions and their adoption in healthcare

    Normalisation Process Theory

    Experiences of chronic illness (heart failure, type 1 diabetes, musculoskeletal pain, persistent and medically unexplained symptoms)

    Healthcare communication in the consultation (heart failure, primary care, physiotherapy)

    Development and testing of a Symptoms Clinic in Primary Care (MSS3 Trial - Funded by NIHR HS&DR)

  • Please visit the Pure Research Information Portal for further information
  • Effectiveness of an extended-role general practitioner clinic for patients with persistent physical symptoms: the Multiple Symptoms Study 3 randomised controlled trial, Burton, C., Mooney, C., Sutton, L., White, D., Dawson, J., Neilson, A., Rowlands, G., Thomas, S., Horspool, M., Fryer, K., Greco, M., Sanders, T., Thomas, R., Cooper, C., Turton, E., Waheed, W., Woodward, J., Mallender, E., Deary, V. 4 Apr 2024, In: The Lancet
  • Explanation for symptoms and biographical repair in a clinic for persistent physical symptoms, Sanders, T., Fryer, K., Greco, M., Mooney, C., Deary, V., Burton, C. 21 Apr 2024, In: SSM - Qualitative Research in Health
  • How can asset-based approaches reduce inequalities? Exploring processes of change in England and Spain, Cassetti, V., Barnes, A., Powell, K., Sanders, T. 1 Apr 2024, In: Health Promotion International
  • Diabetes, Sanders, T. 1 Mar 2023, The Wiley-Blackwell Encyclopaedia of Health, Illness, Behaviour and Society, Wiley
  • Recognition, explanation, action, learning: Teaching and delivery of a consultation model for persistent physical symptoms, Fryer, K., Sanders, T., Greco, M., Mooney, C., Deary, V., Burton, C. 1 Oct 2023, In: Patient Education and Counseling
  • Changing healthcare professionals' non-reflective processes to improve the quality of care, Potthoff, S., Kwascinska, D., Avery, L., Finch, T., Gardner, B., Hankonen, N., Johnston, D., Johnston, M., Kok, G., Lally, P., Maniatopoulos, G., Marques, M., McCleary, N., Presseau, J., Rapley, T., Sanders, T., ten Hoor, G., Vale, L., Verplanken, B., Grimshaw, J. 1 Apr 2022, In: Social Science and Medicine
  • Improving knowledge mobilisation in healthcare: A qualitative exploration of creative co-design methods, Grindell, C., Sanders, T., Bec, R., Tod, A., Wolstenholme, D. 1 May 2022, In: Evidence and Policy
  • Integrating mental health care into home-based nursing services: A qualitative study utilising normalisation process theory, Ohlsen, S., Sanders, T., Connell, J., Wood, E. 1 May 2022, In: Journal of Clinical Nursing
  • Liver disease management as routine work in primary care? A qualitative interview study to guide implementation, Jarvis, H., Sanders, T., Hanratty, B. 1 Dec 2022, In: British Journal of General Practice (BJGP)
  • Study protocol for the Multiple Symptoms Study 3: a pragmatic, randomised controlled trial of a clinic for patients with persistent (medically unexplained) physical symptoms, Mooney, C., White, D., Dawson, J., Deary, V., Fryer, K., Greco, M., Horspool, M., Neilson, A., Rowlands, G., Sanders, T., Thomas, R., Thomas, S., Waheed, W., Burton, C. 15 Nov 2022, In: BMJ Open

Claire Leader A qualitative exploration of the experiences of leaders supporting the wellbeing of the Nursing and Midwifery workforce in NHS settings. Start Date: 01/03/2020

  • Health and Social Research PhD May 01 2000
  • Sociology MSc September 01 1993
  • Sociology BA (Hons) July 01 1992
  • Fellow of the Higher Education Academy FHEA 2019

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