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Here are the biographies of all speakers presenting at the conference.

Keynote speakers

Professor Helen Stokes-Lampard


As Chair of the RCGP, Helen helps shape policy and leads the strategy of the college, working with politicians, policy makers and the media to ensure that the ‘voice’ of general practice and GPs is understood and represented. She is a part-time GP partner at The Cloisters Medical Practice in Lichfield, Staffordshire, a friendly, dynamic group practice, which she joined in 2002, having just completed her academic GP training in inner city Birmingham and at the medical school in Birmingham University.

Prior to training as a GP, Helen worked in obstetrics and gynaecology for several years and this experience shaped her clinical and academic aspirations. She was a personal mentor for doctors in difficulty in the midlands until 2016, a scheme supported by the West Midlands Deanery and RCGP Midland Faculty.

Helen was the head of primary care teaching (undergraduate) in the medical school of the University of Birmingham until becoming RCGP Chair.

Her diverse research interests have spanned gynaecological cancer screening, all aspects of women’s health, epidemiology and data linkage studies. The subject of her PhD was ‘Variation in NHS Utilisation of Vault Cytology Tests in Women post-hysterectomy’. She was clinical director of the accredited Primary Care Trials Unit at Birmingham until July 2012 when she resigned to allow her time to concentrate on her RCGP roles. She was also head of the dynamic academic GP trainees programme at Birmingham. She ran an MSc module in community gynaecology and taught communication skills and ethics.

There will also be a chance to meet Helen in the workshop, Your Chance, Your Ideas, Your College.

Dr Robert Varnam


Robert Varnam is a GP in inner city Manchester and director of general practice development at NHS England. He has very diverse experience including local service and commissioning leadership, quality improvement, leadership development, health services research and national policy. He has been at the heart of work in recent years to embed integrated care, develop clinically led commissioning and transform primary care.

As head of general practice development at NHS England, Robert contributes to vision, policy and strategy on the future of primary care, commissions support and evaluation for national innovation schemes, and provides direct support to practices, federations and CCGs teams leading change. He was one of the architects of the General Practice Forward View.


Dr Harpreet Sood


Dr Harpreet Sood is the associate chief clinical information officer (CCIO) at NHS England and a GP trainee. Harpreet was formerly senior fellow to the CEO of NHS England where his portfolio of work included the launch and implementation of the NHS Diabetes Prevention Programme, innovation and technology policy and leading on the Wachter Review, which focused on digitisation across the NHS. As associate CCIO, Harpreet is involved with implementing the recommendations from the Wachter Review including the launch of the NHS Digital Academy.

Prior to NHS England, Harpreet was a Deland Fellow at Brigham and Women’s Hospital in Boston where he focused on diffusing innovation through complex organisations with the launch of the iHub, service care redesign and researching the impact of health information technology on healthcare. Whilst in Boston, Harpreet also co-founded a digital health start-up in paediatric asthma adherence, which was funded by Harvard Medical School.

Harpreet trained as a clinical doctor at King’s College London and Imperial College Business School and completed a Masters in Public Health (MPH) at Harvard University. Harpreet sits on the NHS Prevention Board, Advisory Board for Digital Health London and is vice chair of the British Computer Society Health Committee.

Dr Claire Marie Thomas


Claire is currently practicing as a part-time salaried GP in London, where she lives with her husband Stuart. The rest of her time is taken up with roles in leadership and global health and development.  She works as an independent consultant in training development for USHAPE, a UKAID funded project in Uganda working to upskill local health workers in family planning. 

Last year she was honoured to be elected as the president of the Vasco da Gama Movement,  the young doctors movement of the European branch of the World Family Doctors Organisation. In the past she has held roles with the BMA and the Faculty of Medical Leadership and Management. Claire graduated from Birmingham Medical School in 2008 and has a bachelors in Public Health and Diplomas in Tropical Medicine & Hygiene and Sexual & Reproductive Health. As an undergraduate, Claire was best known for her role as co-founder and chair of the board of trustees of Students for Kids International Projects, whom she remains a patron for to this day.  Her work has taken her all over the globe with time spent volunteering in Ecuador, Zambia, Nepal and Uganda. She is currently carrying out independent crowd funded research into health care staff attitudes towards Gender Based Violence in rural Uganda, to inform future interventions in the area.

Claire will also be taking part in From Conception to Reality where she will discuss the practicalities of setting up international projects.

Dr Duncan Shrewsbury


Dr Duncan Shrewsbury is an academic GP registrar in Worcestershire, the West Midlands. For the last two years he has worked at the RCGP as vice, and then subsequently chair of the national AiT committee. He also works as a Senior Lecturer in Clinical Education and Primary Care at the University of Worcester. His clinical interests include child health and urgent care. His PhD in medical education focused on dyslexia in doctors, and his wider academic work focuses on wellbeing, learner support, and inequalities.

Vikesh Sharma


Dr Vikesh Sharma is a GP Partner in Stockwell, South London. He completed GP training in 2010 on the south coast, followed by a MSc in Clinical Leadership & Management whilst working in the commissioning environment.

He was also a member of the RCGP Junior International Core Committee leading on the development of a Europe wide EU funded Erasmus-type exchange program involving AiTs and First5s from 27 different countries.  His work also saw him involved in primary care development projects in Japan and Tanzania.

With GP values instilled, an insight into health systems and a perspective enriched by international colleagues & experiences he set roots in the diverse and vibrant borough of Lambeth with a passion in health inequalities. Why do people living minutes away from each other experience such different health outcomes and how can we as GPs change this?

Becoming a partner in 2013 provided the platform upon which to work with the community, the CCG and local charities. Primarily focusing on inequalities due to cultural and linguistic barriers, Dr Sharma invited Portuguese GPs over to the UK to innovate locally led interventions with the 35,000 Portuguese speaking residents in Lambeth. Meanwhile his practice was twinned with a family medicine clinic in Kumasi, Ghana, providing insights and fostering trust with the local West African population.  Awarded Outstanding Contribution to Primary Care in 2016 by Lambeth CCG, his community driven initiatives are now looking to evolve into social enterprises tackling inequalities in marginalised communities.

Vikesh will also be taking part in From Conception to Reality where he will discuss setting up a social enterprise.

Workshop facilitators

Dr Rupy Aujla


Dr Rupy Aujla is the NHS GP who started ‘The Doctor’s Kitchen’. A multi-platform resource to inspire patients about the beauty of food and the medicinal effects of eating well. He creates delicious recipes and talks about the amazing clinical research behind the ingredients he uses on YouTube, Instagram and his blog. In his role as clinical adviser to the Royal College of GPs, he has big aspirations to bring the concept of ‘culinary medicine’ to the profession globally.

Rupy will be co-facilitating both How to make your passion your work and Social media: An Innovator’s Guide.

Dr Surina Chibber


Dr Surina Chibber is a portfolio GP, co-founder of MyLocumManager.com, GP writer, undergraduate tutor at Kings College London and LMC representative for Hounslow.

She completed her VTS 2 years ago and since then has created a varied, enjoyable and exciting career. Her different roles allow her to bring new skills within general practice and she looks forward to sharing these with conference attendees.

Surina will be facilitating 10 Things to Kickstart Your Career.

Janet Coan


Janet Coan joined the Bromley by Bow Centre in 2015 to help develop and grow the Social Prescribing programme. She joined from the private sector where she worked in a variety of strategic management and leadership roles. Janet is also a qualified psychodynamic counsellor with experience working in primary care and hospice settings.

Janet will be facilitating Unlocking Social Prescribing.

John Craig


John Craig is Chief Executive of Care City and his responsibilities include delivering on Care City’s two priority programmes; the NHS Innovation Test Bed and NHS Healthy New Town at Barking Riverside of which he leads the Health & Care System workstream looking at both interim health and care provision and developing a longer term solution.

John is a Senior Associate of Innovation Unit, and has previously worked with FutureGov, the Cabinet Office’s Policy Lab, Shelter and Stonewall. ​

John will be co-facilitating Building a Healthy New Town

Dr LyAnh Dang


Dr Lyanh is a general practitioner, nutritionist and yoga instructor with a specialist interest in yoga therapy and wellness. She trained as a doctor in London, working across several hospitals in different disciplines before specialising in general practice which best suits her passion of studying all aspects of medicine.

She studied a degree in nutrition and also completed a diploma from the Faculty of Sexual and Reproductive Medicine for sexual health and family planning. Dr Lyanh has always been enthusiastic about exercise and its health benefits but her journey with yoga began after being diagnosed with breast cancer in her 20s. Yoga alongside conventional medicine helped cure her and show her the possibility of uniting western medicine and eastern philosophy.

Yoga gave her the tools to create awareness of self and others and uniting of the mind, body and soul. She has since not looked back, with drive and devotion to spread her love and the benefits of yoga. Dr Lyanh trained as a yoga instructor in Thailand with further advanced yoga training in one of the most renowned ashrams in Rishikesh, India. She continues studying different disciplines of yoga and has recently completed Rocket yoga training in the UK.

Her main belief is prevention is better than cure and continues to practice medicine holistically with every patient she sees alongside teaching yoga in London.

Lyanh will be facilitating Yoga at Your Desk.

Dr Stephanie deGiorgio


Dr deGiorgio is a GP from east Kent. She is currently working as a locum, but has worked as a partner and salaried doctor. She has been a trainer and programme director and is currently on the GPC of the BMA. She has special interests in perinatal mental health and women’s health having started her career in obs and gynae. She helped to set up and run Resilient GP, an online peer support forum of over 7,000 GPs and primary care clinicians.

Stephanie will be co-facilitating Social Media: An Innovator’s Guide.

Maxwell Flitton


Maxwell is a nurse with 5 years accident and emergency experience at Charing Cross hospital. He completed a physics degree in his spare time between 12 hour shifts and is currently studying for a MSc in physics and engineering in medicine at UCL.

He codes in python, objective-C, and swift and has written his own  app: Medical Matrix, which is now on the apple app store. He is also the co-founder of www.mygpevents.co.uk, for which he coded the backend data management. He has been invited to speak about coding to medical professionals at conferences at Imperial College London and the Royal Society of Medicine, to name but a few.

You can learn more on his blog.

Maxwell will be facilitating Coding for GPs.

Dr Clare Gerada


is the daughter of Dr Anthony Gerada and Mrs Josephine Gerada. Anthony arrived in the UK in 1964 and worked as a singlehanded, then dual handed GP in Peterborough. Clare vividly remembers  accompanying him on home visits and him inspiring her with his tremendous commitment to medicine and general practice. He taught her that to be a good GP you have to be a good listener and to give something back to your community, something he did for nearly 40 years.

Clare studied medicine at University College London, qualifying in 1982. She trained in medicine, then psychiatry and then followed her father's foot steps and became a general practitioner in south London, where she has stayed ever since, just about to celebrate her 25th anniversary at the practice. The practice started life in 1969 – and remains on its current site – on the ground floor of a 19-storey housing estate in Lambeth. The practice has now expanded becoming one the largest GP group practices in London. Her training in psychiatry led her to a life long interest in managing drug users – and in fact represented the Department of Health (England) advising the Maltese Government on their drug policy.

Over the years, Clare has held a number of local and national leadership positions, including chair of the RCGP, director of primary care for the national clinical governance team and senior medical advisor to the Department of Health. In 2008, she won the contract to run the Practitioner Health Programme (www.php.nhs.uk), which is a pioneering programme providing confidential services to doctors and dentists with mental health or addiction problems.

Clare will be facilitating How to Thrive and Survive at Work and co-facilitating I’m a GP Parent (or will be soon)!

Professor Nick Harding


Professor Harding was formally elected as chair for West Birmingham CCG in June 2012 after being interim chair since 2011. He has worked in inner city Birmingham for more than 20 years. He is a founding partner in Modality Partnership (formerly known as Vitality), which brings together 15 practices for almost 100,000 patients from a diverse inner city population. This new type of super-partnership was referred to in the Kings Fund & Nuffield Trust’s reviews of potential primary care models for the future and became a vanguard new model of care (multi-speciality community provider). The partnership has worked to improve primary care integration and at-scale quality of care in general practice. It is widening this local model for integration with community, mental health and social care services.

Professor Harding holds a number of national roles, including member of the King’s Fund General Advisory Council, the Health Education Advisory Group, the Nuffield Leadership Panel and co-chair of the specialised commissioning task force. His regional roles include being a member of the West Midlands Clinical Senate and he is the first chair of the joint Black Country Commissioning Partnership established in 2017, and led by the four Black Country CCGs in collaboration with SWB CCG.

Nick will be facilitating What are New Care Models?

Dr Benjamin Holdsworth


Ben is a financial planner and a director of Cavendish Medical as well a practising medic. As such, he has a genuine understanding of the realities that every medical professional must face. He can advise clients on key financial matters at every stage of their careers, having first-hand knowledge of the complex personal finances of those working in the NHS and private practice.

In his spare time, Ben likes to keep fit and has completed several marathons and endurance cycle events. He also likes to go skiing whenever he gets the chance.

Ben will be co-facilitating Financial Survival Guide.

Dr Yassir Javaid

Twitter TBC

Dr Javaid is the cardiovascular lead at Nene CCG and the primary care cardiovascular lead at East Midlands Strategic Clinical Network. He qualified from Cambridge University and completed his GP VTS training in Northampton.

He has an interest in cardiology and echocardiography and was a clinical lead in the Northamptonshire Community Cardiology service, which had a focus on patients with heart failure and valve disease. He was recently named Pulse GP of the Year for his work in reducing stroke emergency admissions in the East Midlands. He is also a council member of the British Heart Valve Society and on the editorial board for the British Journal of Cardiology.

Yassir will be co-facilitating Pathways to Develop Your Special Interest.

Dr. Abeyna Jones


A London born girl with classical piano, trauma surgery in South Africa, Urology, Occupational Medicine and social entrepreneurship under her belt, Abeyna is a self-proclaimed serial career changer who has disrupted her medical career with the objective to secure a portfolio professional lifestyle that works for her.

Borne out of her diverse experiences, she founded Medic Footprints with the aim to provide doctors with an extensive on and offline resource of community based knowledge on the wealth of careers available to them beyond conventional medicine. Importantly Medic Footprints promotes a core focus on wellbeing for doctors which is currently her specialist interest.

Alongside working as an Occupational Medicine Registrar in the NHS, she is an NHS Leadership Academy and BBC Expert Voice alumni, Black British Business Awards Finalis, Huffington Post Blogger and an NHS Clinical Entrepreneur Fellow.

Abeyna will be discussing her experiences in From Conception to Reality

Mat Lawson

Twitter TBC

Mat Lawson is the Head of Professional Development at the RCGP and has been employed by the RCGP since 2008.  Key areas in Mat’s current remit include appraisal and revalidation, extended role accreditation and membership by assessment of performance.

Mat will be co-facilitating Pathways to Develop Your Special Interest.    

Dr Juliet McGrattan


Dr Juliet McGrattan is a GP and a clinical champion for physical activity at Public Health England. Her passion is improving health through exercise. Alongside her GP and PHE work, she is a blogger and health writer. She is the resident GP for Women’s Running magazine and the online community UKRunChat.

Her book, Sorted: The Active Women’s Guide to Health, was published by Bloomsbury this year. She presents regularly on the topic of physical activity for health and has appeared on national television and radio. She practices what she preaches as she is a keen marathon runner, founder and leader of her local running club and the UK manager and Women’s Health Lead for 261 Fearless, a global non-profit movement working to empower women through running.

Juliet will be co-facilitating How to make your passion your work.

Dr Tom Micklewright


Dr Tom Micklewright is a GP trainee, speaker, medical leadership fellow and has received training through the NHS Clinical Entrepreneur Programme 2016/17.

Tom͛'s interest in entrepreneurship began at Newcastle University during his medical training but for a long time, there seemed no way of integrating this with his passion for medicine. Soon after starting his foundation training however, Tom found his niche in quality improvement, suggesting novel solutions to longstanding problems, including an electronic directory of hospital services for community health workers and a personalised, digital neuro observation chart for head injury patients attending A&E. After winning funding for one of his projects through Health Education North West͛'s Dragon͛s Den Quality Improvement competition, Tom decided to apply for a medical leadership fellowship, so that he could have the time and support to develop his ideas further.

Simultaneously, NHS England unveiled a new programme to support healthcare innovators: The clinical entrepreneur programme. Tom successfully applied to the programme and has been drawing connections between his entrepreneurship journey and his medical leadership training ever since.

His special interest is in mental health and wellbeing, which led to him creating Head Salad, a fun and engaging mental wellbeing and resilience project for children and adolescents. Head Salad works with young people from 11 to 18 years, has secured a regular contract with a school in the North West and is now seeking to engage more schools in this exciting project.

Tom will be discussing Head Salad in From Conception to Reality.

Dr Anjaly Mirchandani


Dr Anjaly Mirchandani is a salaried GP in Ealing and is a specialty doctor in palliative medicine at Michael Sobell Hospice. She has a background in general surgery and has a specialist interest in minor surgery. She is passionate about undergraduate and postgraduate medical education, is a GP teacher at Imperial College and also delivers end of life care teaching within Hillingdon CCG and on the Difficult Conversations course. She also enjoys event medicine and volunteers with Festival Medical Services. 

Anjaly will be co-facilitating Pathways to Develop Your Special Interest.​

Dr Claudia Pastides


Claudia (aka DrMummykins) is a mum of three young children, locum GP and health blogger. She set up her DrMummykins blog in 2015 with the aim of spreading accurate, practical and parent-friendly health tips to north London parents. She now also blogs for BabyCentre (the UK’s largest pregnancy and parenting website with more than 7 million monthly visitors) and runs child health awareness sessions for parents locally. 

Claudia graduated from University College of London medical school in 2009 and is a member of the Royal College of GPs, having completed her GP training in London last year (2016).

Claudia with be co-facilitating both Social media: An Innovator’s Guide and I’m a GP Parent (or will be soon)!

Baljeet Ruprah-Shah

Twitter TBC

Baljeet has recently taken the role of Project Manager for the Barking Riverside Healthy New Town. She has been a leader within the NHS and health sector for 25 years, most recently as Chief Executive of Ealing Mental Health & Wellbeing – Smoking Cessation. She has redesigned, modernised and developed services and has always considered working with local communities and diversity to be at the heart of any quality service. Baljeet now offers consultancy into the public sector and uses her wide ranging experience to bring about positive change for patients in areas as wide ranging from business development to co-designing services and is an editor for the London Primary Care Journal. She is passionate about ensuring quality mental health services are provided and that users and carers are at the centre of any service. Baljeet is also Chair for Richmond Borough Mind and a Committee member for the Indian Workers Association, a voluntary organisation established in 1955.

Baljeet will be co-facilitating Building a Healthy New Town.

Dr Chris Smith


Chris Smith is a researcher based at the London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine where he recently completed a PhD on interventions delivered by mobile phone to increase contraception use. He works as a sessional GP in London. He has developed and evaluated a digital health intervention in Cambodia as well as built a primary care information website.

Chris will be discussing these in From Conception to Reality.

Dr Jonathon Tomlinson


Dr Jonathon Tomlinson is a full-time GP, GP trainer and undergraduate tutor at the Lawson Practice in Hoxton, Hackney. He has completed a NIHR academic fellowship, studying professionalism, resilience and patient-centred care. In 2015 he helped to set up a course at UCLH to teach medical students about the impact of shame in the medical encounter and in 2017 he is developing the coursework to explore shame in the context of trauma.

Recently he has been helping to develop a curriculum for ‘Poverty Medicine’ – general practice delivered in areas and to people with high-levels of deprivation and complexity and relatively few resources. He writes a blog about general practice in which he experiments with ways to engage patients, clinicians, educators and policy makers with topics like continuity of care, chronic pain, loneliness and the social determinants of health. He has been in a professional study group for 17 years meeting every three weeks on a Sunday evening to discuss clinical topics, cases and pastoral issues and believes that professional peer supervision is a key component of resilience.

Jonathon will be facilitating What We Can Learn From Our Patients?

Michelle Trivett

Twitter TBC

Michelle, a chartered accountant, is highly experienced in dealing with the tax affairs of doctors at all stages of their careers. Michelle is friendly and conscientious, and enjoys working with her clients to organise their accounts and tax returns in good time.

Michelle will be co-facilitating Financial Survival Guide.

Dr Shubs Upadhyay


Dr Shubs Upadhyay is a sessional GP in north London, working mainly in urgent care. He is co-founder of myGPevents, an online platform to enable GPs to search for CPD, networking and conferences, and is also working with a start up that has launched a telemedicine service, as well as being community champion for Network Locum.

In Conception to Reality Shubs will be talking about his experience in setting up myGPevents and sharing insights on how GP trainees can get involved in coding and digital health.

Dr Anju Verma


Anju is a part-time general practitioner in a training practice in Hammersmith and Fulham and Senior Teaching Fellow and Faculty Development Lead in the Department of Primary Care and Public Health. She qualified from Imperial College.

After many years in hospital medicine and obtaining the MRCP she chose general practice as a career as it allowed her to combine it with her love of medical education. She worked as a Clinical Teaching Fellow here in the department, and was co-lead for the final year primary care GPSA attachment. During this time she was involved in all aspects of undergraduate teaching, ran a very popular workshop on ECGs for local GPs and contributed to the book ‘GP at a Glance’ which won 1st prize in the 2013 BMA book awards.

Following this, she was successful in securing one of seven National Institute for Health Research (NIHR) Fellowships in Medical Education based at UCL Medical School. She has completed a Masters in Clinical Education from the Institute of Education. Her dissertation focused on cultural aspects of doctor-patient communication in a high stakes exam setting.

Her role at Imperial involves quality assurance of community teaching, recruitment of new teachers, organising and running teacher training days for new and experienced GP teachers, teaching undergraduate medical students and overseeing educational research.

Anju will be facilitating Medical Education - How to Get in and Stand Out

Dr Fiona Wright

Twitter TBC

Fiona has been a consultant in public health medicine since 2000. Her current role as co-lead, Barking Riverside Healthy New Town is a partnership between Barking and Dagenham Council and the Greater London Authority. The key part of the role is getting health into the growth agenda and addressing wider determinants of health in Barking and Dagenham. She also leads the health intelligence team. Her role in Barking and Dagenham and the ambitions for the council marry well the priorities of the new Mayor of London and, in her GLA role she is leading the element of health equity in all policies within the health inequalities strategy.

Fiona is co-chair of the London Healthy High Streets group and wellbeing editor of the London Journal of Primary Care. Fiona’s past roles include independent consultancy for the Institute of Health Equity (“Marmot” team) and early work as a junior doctor in the south west of England. She has undertaken public health training, consultant and interim director roles in NHS and local government organisations in London since 1990.

Fiona will be presenting the abstract competition and poster competition prizes, as well as co-facilitating Building a Healthy New Town

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