UCL Great Ormond Street Institute of Child Health


Great Ormond Street Institute of Child Health

Prof Ruth Gilbert

Prof Ruth Gilbert

Professor of Clinical Epidemiology

Population, Policy & Practice Dept

UCL GOS Institute of Child Health

Joined UCL
1st Apr 2002

Research summary


Ruth Gilbert is a clinical epidemiologist, who trained in paediatrics. Much of her research uses de-identified, administrative data to address clinical and policy questions related to the health of children and families. She is interested in how policy and service provision can improve outcomes for vulnerable families. Her research uses record linkage to consider health, social and educational trajectories of children from birth to adulthood and to incorporate information from parents and siblings.

Ruth co-directs the NIHR Children and Families Policy Research which provides evidence for government. She also contributes to the Rare Diseases research within the NIHR Great Ormond Street Hospital Biomedical Research Centre, focusing on congenital anomalies. Her team established the ECHILD database (Education and Child Health Insights from Linked Data) linking educational, hospitalisation and social care data for all children in England. A new programme (the HOPE study) uses ECHILD to evaluate the impact of special educational needs provision on health outcomes.  

Ruth supports the Child Health Informatics Group, a group of researchers at UCL who are using novel cross-sectoral linkages between public services and surveys to conduct research focussed on children and families. Examples of recent work supervised by Ruth include, a series of exemplar studies using the ECHILD database, a study using linked maternal mental health data and family court proceedings, and a study that linked a series of historic randomised controlled trials of modified milk formula for infants to assess their cognitive ability at age 16 years through linkage to school attainment tests. Ruth has previously used linked administrative hospital and infection surveillance data for large pragmatic trials in neonatal (PREVAIL) and paediatric intensive care settings (CATCH) to address questions of clinical outcomes, health care costs and the generalisability of trial findings to practice across the NHS in England.