Meet the Cochrane UK & Ireland Trainees Advisory Group

The Cochrane UK & Ireland Trainees Advisory Group (CUKI TAG) was founded in 2015. All members were selected through a competitive national recruitment process. 

"Our aim is simple: to inspire the next generation of senior doctors to embrace and practice evidence-based healthcare. We believe this is surely the way towards better healthcare. To this end, we colloborate closely with Cochrane UK to develop and deliver engagement activities for trainees across the UK and Ireland". 

Dr. James Chan, Speciality Registrar in Plastic Surgery and the 2017/18 chair of the CUKI TAG.

Who's who?

James Chan

James Chan - Chair of the Cochrane Trainees Advisory Group, 2017/8 

 James is an ST7 Specialty Registrar in Plastic Reconstructive Surgery at the Oxford Deanery and Honorary Lecturer at the Nuffield Department of Orthopaedics, Rheumatology and Musculoskeletal Sciences, University of Oxford. He is passionate about education and the practice of evidence-based medicine, particularly in specialties where evidence is sparse. He hopes to make an impact in his role as Chair of the Cochrane Trainees Advisory Group 2017/8. 


James graduated from Cambridge University in 2004 and gained Membership at the Royal College of Surgeons in 2008. In 2010, he undertook 4 years of full time translational research, culminating in the award of a DPhil, on targeting the early inflammatory pathways to promote bone repair as a Wellcome Trust Clinical Research Training Fellow and Royal College of Surgeons of England Research Fellow at the Kennedy Institute of Rheumatology, Oxford University. He was Senior Scholar of Lincoln College, Oxford University, and recipient of other awards including the European Federation of Immunological Societies Travel Grant, Best Oral Presentation at the Bone research Society meeting, Barron Prize (British Association of Plastic, Reconstructive and Aesthetic Surgeons) and UK-Israel Regenerative Medicine Conference Travel Award. He has also received grants from the Paton-Masser Memorial Fund (BAPRAS) and the Royal College of Surgeons of Edinburgh. He remains active as a clinician scientist and aims to bridge the gap between the bench and bedside.

Samantha Gale - Secretary of the Cochrane Trainees Advisory Group, 2017/8 

Sam Gale

Samantha is an ST4 public health specialty registrar in the Oxford Deanery. She is currently undertaking an update of a Cochrane systematic review with the Cochrane Tobacco Addiction Group and is CUKI Trainee Advisory Group Secretary. Samantha graduated from Cambridge University in 2010. After completing the Foundation Programme, she was awarded a Rotary Ambassadorial Scholarship to study a Masters in Public Health at the University of Hong Kong, where she was awarded the Professor Anthony J Hedley Scholarship for Master of Public Health, a HKU CEDARS Gold Award for volunteer work, and graduated with Distinction. She returned to the UK and started training in paediatrics before deciding to train in public health. In between, she worked as a Clinical Educator at the University of Buckingham Medical School and obtained a Postgraduate Certificate in Medical Education. She is still involved in teaching and medical education research at the University of Buckingham.

Alex FowlerAlexander Fowler

Alex is an academic foundation doctor at Guy's and St. Thomas' NHS Foundation trust with an interest in improving the quality of research reporting and perioperative care. He is the managing editor of an open access, peer reviewed journal (Annals of Medicine and Surgery), assistant director of the Academic Surgical Collaborative and the assistant director of Research Registry, which hopes to improve the registration of research studies.

anna sutherland

Anna Sutherland

Anna Sutherland is currently a Cochrane UK Fellow and an ST4 in Palliative Medicine. Anna is undertaking a systematic review and is the former CUKI Trainee Advisory Committee Chair. Anna's main interest is in improving the quality of patient care at the end of life, with a particular interest in the evidence based use of emerging pharmacological therapies and in supporting colleagues through education. Anna also enjoys spending time with her twin daughters.


Bosun Hong

Bosun gained her Bachelor of Dental Surgery in 2012 from Newcastle University. She completed a Cochrane UK fellowship in 2016, and is currently undertaking dental core training at Birmingham Dental Hospital. During her previous dental core training in oral and maxillofacial surgery, she developed a strong research interest in dental anxiety management with a particular focus on the provision of dentoalveolar surgery under alternative anaesthetic modalities to general anaesthesia. As a dental member of the Cochrane UK&Ireland Trainees Advisory Group. She is committed to actively participate in promoting evidence-based practice for dental trainees.

Chris Jones

Chris Jones

Chris is an Academic Clinical Fellow in Clinical Oncology based at the University of Leeds and Leeds Cancer Centre. He graduated from the University of Birmingham in 2013 and moved to Leeds two years later after completing the Academic Foundation Programme. He was enthused by research as an undergraduate and completed internships at the Universities of Manchester and Birmingham, MRC Harwell and Harvard Reproductive Endocrine Sciences Center. He is committed to ensuring that students and trainees similarly benefit from early exposure to research and, in addition to his role on the CUKI Trainees Advisory Group, oversee a number of student-led research initiatives. His wider academic responsibilities include leading a precision oncology trial, sitting as an Expert Member on an NHS Research Ethics Committee and peer-reviewing for three journals.


Chris McAloon

Dr Chris McAloon is a cardiology specialty trainee in the West Midlands deanery, whom is currently out-of-program completing his PhD at University Hospitals Coventry and Warwickshire NHS Trust and the University of Warwick in heart failure and cardiac resynchronization therapy. Chris graduated from the University of Birmingham in 2007 and subsquently undertook one of the first academic foundation year one rotations, winning the West Midlands Deanery FY1 research prize. Currently Chris holds an honorary clinical tutor post at both the University of Birmingham and Warwick.

In November 2015 he won the NIHR/RCP clinical trainee research prize, alongside presenting internationally and publishing several peer-reviewed articles. Chris is passionate about accessing medical research and the application of evidence based medicine, in particular cardiovascular research.

Christin Henein

Christin Henein

Christin graduated from Newcastle University in 2012, where she gained an intercalated masters degree in stem cells and regenerative medicine with distinction. Her undergraduate and postgraduate research in limbal stem cells were funded by The Wellcome Trust and Graham Watson Award respectively.  She has a strong interest in patient safety and improvement science and has completed the Academic Foundation Programme in healthcare leadership and management at Brighton & Sussex University Hospital. She is now an NIHR Academic Clinical Fellow in ophthalmology at Newcastle Eye Centre.  Currently her research focuses on developing treatments for dry age related macular degeneration. 

david Roberts

David Roberts

David trained in medicine at the University of Birmingham.  After several years working in hospital medicine and on clinical trials, David is now training in public health, and has a degree in global health and is a Member of the Faculty of Public Health.  He has an interest in communicable disease epidemiology and control, and is authoring a review with the Cochrane Infectious Diseases Group. David is currently a fellow on the Public Health England Field Epidemiology Training Programme.


Eoin O'Sullivan

Eoin is a Renal Specialty Trainee in Edinburgh, with an interest in improving the utilisation of high quality evidence in clinical practice and Medical Education. He thinks there's great potential for integrating evidence creation and usage into medical education at every level, which will benefit learners and patients alike. 


Natalie Blencowe

Natalie Blencowe is an NIHR Clinical Lecturer and upper GI surgical trainee in the Severn Deanery. Her PhD focused on methodological issues in surgical trials, and she is continuing this interest within post-doctoral work funded by the Academy of Medical Sciences. She is committed to enthusing and motivating surgical trainees to collaborate and participate in high quality multi-centre surgical studies. She co-leads the Severn and Peninsula Audit and Research Collaborative for Surgeons (SPARCS), is a member of the Bristol Surgical Trials Centre and the MRC ConDuCT-II Hub.


Neha Pathak

Neha Pathak has previously been an academic foundation programme trainee and NIHR academic clinical fellow in obstetrics and gynaecology. From August 2016, she will be training in community sexual and reproductive health at Guy's and St Thomas'. She is driven by a desire to improve access to vulnerable patient groups and reduce inequalities in healthcare. This is reflected in her main research interests: intimate partner violence, sexual abuse, and cervical cancer screening. Her research has resulted in prizes, grants and peer-reviewed publications. In this role as a CUKI member, she is committed to widening participation in research for all trainees and integrating evidence-based practice into specialty training pathways. 


Rachel Kuo

Rachel is an Academic FY2 working in Oxford in collaboration with Cochrane UK for the past 2 years- looking forward to starting Core Surgical Training in August 2016! She enjoys running, holidays and following people on Twitter.


rufaro ndokera

Rufaro Ndokera

Rufaro Ndokera is an ST5 in Paediatrics in the Oxford deanery. She graduated from the University of Leicester in 2011 following a medical degree and completion of a BMedSc in International health.She has a special interest in both paediatric and neonatal intensive care medicine. Rufaro undertook a fellowship at Cochrane UK, undertaking an update to a systematic review with the Cochrane Anaesthesia, Critical and Emergency Care group. She was the chair of the Trainees Advisory for 2016/2017, continuing their good work inspiring trainees to actively engage and apply lessons from evidence based medicine.

Sinead McGlacken-Byrne

Sinead McGlacken-Byrne

Sinead is an ST5 in paediatrics currently working in Ireland and commencing training in paediatric endocrinology and diabetes in London this year. Her research in endocrinology has resulted in international presentations and peer-reviewed publications. She has a particular interest in translating high quality evidence into practice across all facets of clinical and academic medicine. She has a Master's in Clinical Education from the National University of Ireland in Galway and now tutors on the Evidence-Based Education module of this programme. She is also a current Quality Improvement Scholar-in-Residence with the Royal College of Physicians of Ireland (RCPI) and the International Society for Quality in Healthcare (ISQua) and is associate editor of the journal BMJ Open Quality.