Dr Nicola Mackintosh

Nicola MackintoshAssociate Professor in Social Science Applied to Health

Social Science Applied to Healthcare Improvement Research (SAPPHIRE) Group

Health Sciences
University of Leicester
George Davies Centre
University Road
Leicester, LE1 7RH

Tel: +44 (0)116 229 7262
Email: njm35@leicester.ac.uk




    I have a background in critical care nursing, and I am a graduate of King’s College London. I moved from clinical practice into research through a desire to understand and influence relationships between frontline practice, organisational systems and socio-cultural context. My research uses sociological theory and methods to bring new understandings to patient safety and improvement / implementation science research. My research covers maternity, emergency and acute care.

    Before I joined SAPPHIRE, I worked in the NIHR King’s Patient Safety and Service Quality (PSSQ) Research Centre leading ethnographic research exploring the management of complications in maternity and acute care including the role of safety tools and rapid response systems. During this time I completed my PhD which examined the construct of ‘rescue’ and relationships between organisational systems, department and individual level processes in managing acute illness. I then moved to the Faculty of Life Sciences & Medicine at Kings College, London leading the process evaluation of an ICU telemedicine programme. I was awarded a post-doctoral fellowship within King’s Improvement Science to study patient and family contributions to safety (specifically patient and family roles in helping to secure response for life threatening conditions).

    I have just completed a cultural collaborative research project which developed an animation, ‘Re-Assure’, to enable women to share their safety concerns about life threatening illness, in order to facilitate a maternity response. I am currently leading a systematic review registered with the Cochrane Consumers and Communication group focusing on the effectiveness of different interventions (informational, educational, behavioural and organisational) designed to increase patient and family involvement in escalation of care for acute life threatening illness. I will continue to work on this review at SAPPHIRE, collaborating with staff from King’s Improvement Science.

    I am committed to research addressing issues of voice, legitimacy and power in healthcare organisation and delivery, and measuring intended and unintended effects of improvement activities.

    I am interested in supervising PhD students in relation to the following topics: organisational and professional boundaries / hierarchies / jurisdictions; digital technologies and changing patient-provider roles; organisation of healthcare work; speaking up for safety (patients, families and staff); risk and uncertainty in pregnancy and childbirth; art and design for knowledge translation and healthcare improvement.

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