Dr Alison Finch joins ARC North Thames as first Senior Nursing Lead

03 May 2023

We are pleased to announce that Dr Alison Finch has been awarded a 3-year Senior Research Leader (Nursing & Midwifery) programme award from the National Institute of Health Research.

This programme, which launched in April 2023, aims to build on successes of the NIHR’s 70@70 programme, to unlock the research potential of many more senior nurses and midwives and increase the visibility of the research nurse and research midwife workforce. Alison is one of the just 35 Senior Research Leaders (SRLs) from a range of healthcare settings, specialisms and roles nationally.

Alison, an assistant chief nurse at UCLH and cancer nurse, recently completed her PhD, an NIHR Clinical Doctoral Research Fellowship, in UCL’s Department of Applied Health Research (DAHR). Alongside her NHS role, she will contribute to the ARC North Thames for the duration of the SRL award as ARC North Thames’ first Senior Nursing Lead.

Alison says: “This new role presents an unrivalled opportunity to scope, harness and develop the research contribution of nurses and midwives – across the spectrum of clinical trials, service improvement, digital healthcare and primary research – among all specialities and professional grades.

My aim is to promote research excellence, building research capacity at the frontline of services in ways that benefit patients and service users – while fostering professional aspiration, resilience and workforce retention through career opportunities and more formal clinical academic roles.

My new relationship with the ARC North Thames values the expertise of nursing. It creates opportunities to further support and integrate the profession within interdisciplinary research that addresses the key priorities of the NHS.”

Professor Rosalind Raine, Director of ARC North Thames, says: “We are delighted that Dr Finch is joining our ARC in this important role. She’s a wonderful role model for nurse researchers, given her own excellence as a researcher, her collaborative ethos and deep commitment to public involvement.”

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