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Meet some of our public reference group

Emily Lam

Emily Lam

My name is Emily. I am a British Chinese and I live in the Northwest of England. I became interested in the study as I was keen to build on what we learned during COVID-19 in involving people by remote means across the country like email and Zoom. In this project, along with other interested lay people, I would like to work with researchers to explore ways to ensure the views and experiences of many more people from various backgrounds could be included. I am persuaded that all these would make our recommendations around gathering information this more credible and reliable and in turn make a step-change to qualitative research. 

Samina Begum

I became interested in health research through my experience of living with a health condition. I got involved with Bradford Institute of Health's 'Born in Bradford' Research. Recently I also worked as a Community Lay Researcher for UCL Covid 19 and Vaccine Hesitancy in BME groups.  


I am involved in the following organisations: 

Versus Arthritis: Research Partner and EDI member 

Open Safely: PPI Advisory Group on Governance 

Standing Together: PPIE Race and Health Inequalities 

Pam Smith

Pam Smith

Hi there! I am Pam Smith - a mom, a grandma and also a building surveyor in a previous life! I live in a rural part of the West Midlands, where I happily struggle to keep a large garden under control. I became interested in PPI as a result of having a cancer diagnosis myself and I now help out with cancer research studies and more recently with palliative care studies. I am interested in this particular study to ensure that the views of the deaf/hard of hearing community are listened.

Cecily Henry

Cecily Henry Phot

Hi my name is Cecily and I live in the East midlands. I have been a public contributor since 2018 with my first role as a contributor with the Research Design Service East Midlands (of which I am still thoroughly enjoying). I continue to support a range of organisations in both co-applicant, advisory panel and patient and carer roles. With a background specialising in Equality Diversity and Inclusion in varying sectors spanning over 15 years, I am committed to supporting innovative ways to ensure a diverse range of voices are heard in research processes. With my Sociological background, the project caught my attention in terms of my interest in factors impacting on the ease, appropriateness, reliability and validity of research undertaken (especially when we are thinking over tackling health inequalities). 

Deb Smith

Deb Smith

I am Deb Smith, and I live in Warwickshire. I have a number of long-term health conditions and so have used the health and social care services a lot. I have worked as someone with lived experience within health and social care sector across the UK over 11 years. I am an experienced reviewer for NIHR. I often act as lead patient and public representative for different projects.