Institute of Epidemiology & Health Care


Primary Care Medical Education Conference 2023

This conference provides an opportunity to reflect & discuss current issues in primary care teaching with multidisciplinary learning among GPs, primary & community practitioners, patients & students.

'Inclusion, Equality and Changing Perspectives in Primary Care Medical Education'

This year's conference will be held at the prestigious Royal Society of Chemistry (RSC) at Burlington House. The theme for this year is Inclusion, Equality and Changing Perspectives in Primary Care Medical Education.

Our primary care clinical education conference 2023 is an opportunity to reflect upon and discuss rapidly changing practices, perspectives and patient experiences of healthcare in the community.

The day will focus primarily on teaching practices, and key issues for medical student learning, to prepare students for their future primary and community healthcare practice. The day will also explore the multiple and complex intersections between medical student education and other primary care learners, teams and systems.

We have an exciting range of speakers and workshops and there will be opportunities for interactive learning and discussion through workshops and informal conversations with peers throughout the day. We will, in particular, be thinking about:

  • The social determinants of health and health inequalities
  • How can we maximise opportunities for learning for ourselves and facilitate learning for others? 
  • Multidisciplinary learning in primary care practice alongside a range of clinical and non-clinical allied health and social care professionals
  • How do we focus our own learning and development of knowledge as educators to meet the needs of our team and clinical practice?
  • How do we enable patients to engage with and utilise learning experiences?  
  • How do we support the increasingly diverse range of learning needs of primary care teams?
  • Developing as an educator

We hope the diverse programme will enable you to feel refreshed as a practitioner, teacher and facilitator of both your own and others' future learning.


Date: 31st March 2023 at Royal Society of Chemistry

Royal Society of Chemistry - venue details

Burlington House is minutes away from both Piccadilly Circus and Green Park tube stations.

Venue address: Royal Society of Chemistry, Burlington House, Piccadilly, London, W1J 0BA

Find the venue on Google Maps

MDU logo
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Conference Programme
9.00-9.15    Registration

9.15-9.45     Welcome & Introduction by Professor Sophie Park, Director of UG Medical Education (Primary Care & Community)

9.45-10.15    The Student Voice
10.15-10.20  Break
10.20-11.00   Keynote Speaker 1 - Professor Kamila Hawthorne
11.00-11.30   Break
11.30-13.00   Morning Workshops

13.00-14.00   Lunch Break 

14.00-15.15   Afternoon Workshops
15.15-15.30   Break

15.30-16.30   Keynote Speaker 2 - Professor Sir Michael Marmot

16.30-17.00   Primary Care Medical Education Tutor & Practice Awards and Close
Keynote Speakers

Keynote Speaker 1: Professor Kamila Hawthorne

Professor Kamila Hawthorne MBE MD FRCGP FRCP FAcadMed FLSW DRCOG DCH(Lond) DFFP PG Cert Med Ed  

Kamila has been a GP for 34 years, with 27 of them spent working in South Wales. She qualified from Somerville College, Oxford, in 1984, and completed her GP training in Nottingham in 1988. Kamila is currently Chair of RCGP Council, having taken up office in November 2022. She was Head of the Graduate Entry Medicine Programme at Swansea University and is on the Trustee Boards of the Kings Fund, and Cardiff Women’s Aid. She is also a Bevan Commissioner and a Fellow of the Learned Society of Wales.  

Kamila has a deep interest in medical education, and believes that we should be training excellent, caring and inclusive clinicians, for a global society. She is passionate about the role of GPs in patient care and as advocates for patients. Her research and clinical working interests have been in health inequalities and access to health services, (her MD was based on working with BAME patient groups with Type 2 diabetes in Nottingham, Manchester and Cardiff). With wide experience of general practice and running community projects in diabetes and heart disease, she has been named ‘GP of the Year’ twice and was awarded an MBE in 2017 for services to General Practice. 

Professor Kamila Hawthorne
Professor Kamilla Hawthorne

Keynote speaker 2: Professor Sir Michael Marmot

Professor Sir Michael G. Marmot MBBS, MPH, PhD, FRCP, FFPHM, FMedSci, FBA; Director of the Institute of Health Equity (UCL Department of Epidemiology & Public Health). 

Plenary title:  Social justice and health equity 

Taking action to reduce health inequalities is a matter of social justice. In developing strategies for tackling health inequalities, we need to confront the social gradient in health not just the difference between the worst off and everybody else.  here is clear evidence when we look across countries that national policies make a difference and that much can be done in cities, towns and local areas. But policies and interventions must not be confined to the health care system; they need to address the conditions in which people are born, grow, live, work and age. The evidence shows that economic circumstances are important but are not the only drivers of health inequalities. Tackling the health gap will take action, based on sound evidence, across the whole of society. 

Prof MM photo
Professor Sir Michael G. Marmot:  https://iris.ucl.ac.uk/iris/browse/profile?upi=MGMAR64


Student Voice

Meryl Ong, 2nd Year UCL Medical Student

Title: Lifestyle Medicine Patient Resource: Physical Exercise & the Menopausal Transition

In this session Meryl will present her physical activity patient resource targeted at women undergoing perimenopause. She completed this project as part of her Lifestyle Medicine Student Selected Component Module at UCL Medical School.

While the health-protective benefits of exercise in the general population have been widely discussed and largely undisputed, the importance of physical activity in women transitioning to menopause is still insufficiently emphasised. Encouraging women to become more active during perimenopause is a preventative measure against diseases commonly associated with this stage of life, such as cardiovascular diseases and osteoporosis. Resistance training, for example, has been shown to delay declines in muscle mass while retaining bone density, reducing the overall risk of osteoporosis.

Meryl Ong
Meryl Ong


Drew Leamon, 4th Year UCL Medical Student

Title: Insights into the experiences of patients with PCOS in primary and secondary care 

Polycystic ovary syndrome presents with physical symptoms seen in patients, such as fertility issues, hirsutism, and metabolic disorders. However, PCOS also contributes to declines in mental health and can affect many facets of patient’s lives, such as with work and personal relationships. The format of this study was a systematic review, conducted via PRISMA guidelines. The review revealed that in order to support patients holistically, healthcare providers should obtain an in-depth grasp of how PCOS affects the individual patient, and the different ways in which their patient may encounter barriers to their treatment. By acknowledging this and working together with patients to fulfil their expectations, adequate modifications can be made to their care to increase the likelihood of successful management and the accomplishment of patients’ personal goals.

Drew Leamon
Drew Leamon


Malvi Shah, 4th Year UCL Medical Student

Title: Intersections between emotional distress and hospital discharge for people living with dementia (PLWD): a qualitative study with family carers

Currently, there are 885,000 people living with dementia (PLWD) in the UK, a number which is projected to increase by 80% to 1.6 million in 2040. Dementia leads to complex life changes: a change in social position, changes in relationships and environments becoming more hazardous, which can cause people significant distress. Hospital discharge is a time of significant change to a person’s life and may lead to acute distress.

Literature reviews on discharge planning for PLWD have shown that it is a process fraught with difficulties, but studies do not centre the experiences of PLWD nor focus on distress specifically. Moreover, most research focuses on the immediate aftermath of discharge, with less emphasis into the transition of care from hospital- based to primary and social care.

This project therefore sought to explore PLWD’s distress during and after a hospital discharge, through conducting interviews with the carers of PLWD who had witnessed a recent discharge of one of their family members. In this session Malvi will present her findings and the scope for further research in this field.

Malvi Shah
 Malvi Shah



Morning workshop 1

Workshop title: Clinical supervision in primary care: A realist evaluation  by Dr Ben Jackson, Director of Primary Care Education at Sheffield Medical School, GP  in Conisbrough, Doncaster, UK

Dr Jackson's teaching and research scholarship focuses on clinical supervision, integrated learning, and health inequities. Current projects include a realist evaluation of clinical supervision and the FAIRSTEPS study on actions for equity in primary care. This work presents a model of the key mechanisms that make clinical supervision work for learners in primary care. Though this realist evaluation focuses on a postgraduate setting, these mechanisms can be applied to learners at all stages, from novice students to established practitioners and will be the focus of this workshop.

Dr Be Jackson
Dr Ben Jackson: https://www.sheffield.ac.uk/medicine/people/aume/ben-jackson


Morning workshop 2

Workshop title: Understanding the human dimension by Dr Louise Younie, GP, Clinical Senior Lecturer at Barts and The London School of Medicine and Dentistry, an Honorary Senior Lecturer at the University of Bristol Medical School.

Being a healthcare practitioner involves our learned knowledge, skills, guidelines, but, for a person-centred approach, also needs an understanding of self and other and the space in between. This human dimension of practice is subjective and uncertain, requiring listening, epistemic humility and compassion. Research has found that managing uncertainty is inversely linked with self-compassion. So, to practice well, we need both compassion and understanding of ourselves and our own needs as well as seeking to understand and have compassion for the needs of the other, moving beyond the idea of resilience and toughing it out alone.

Attending to the human dimension of self or other can be addressed through creative enquiry (engaging with lived experience through the arts) and has been found to lead to transformation of understanding of others as well as flourishing for self.

Dr Louise Younie
Dr Louise Younie: https://www.qmul.ac.uk/ihse/staff/community-based-medical-education/loui...




Morning workshop 3

Workshop title: Moving towards a Person-Centred approach to mindfulness by Dr Kelly Birtwell, Research Fellow in the Centre for Primary Care & Health Services Research at the University of Manchester

Dr Birtwell is a chartered psychologist, person-centred counsellor and mindfulness teacher. Her work explores mindfulness-based interventions for underserved groups, particularly people from areas of socioeconomic deprivation. She is also interested in mindfulness and neurodiversity, and meditation safety. Have you tried mindfulness and thought it didn’t work or wasn’t really for you? Have you advised patients to try it? Can mindfulness be harmful? 

Come along to this workshop to explore what mindfulness is, when it may or may not be helpful, and ways of practising safely. Dr Birtwell will present findings from a realist review of mindfulness for people from areas of socioeconomic deprivation, and discuss the need for person-centred approaches to delivering and practising mindfulness. There will also be opportunities to try some brief, optional, mindfulness practices. 

Dr Kelly Birtwell
Dr Kelly Birtwell
Afternoon workshop 1

Workshop title: Climate change: what we need to and what we can do?

The workshop will begin by presenting the challenge that we face with a changing climate and how this touches on our everyday lives. We will set out how UCL is looking to provide simple tools which allow individuals - professional staff; academic staff, teachers and students to take action. We will then use the workshop to consider the role of different individuals in primary care and how we enable their preparedness to consider and address climate change through their work. 

Richard Jackson
Richard Jackson: Director, Sustainability, University College London


Afternoon workshop 2

Workshop title: Educator Development Opportunities with UCL

Do you enjoy teaching but wanted to learn ways you can improve your skills? Have you ever wondered about the theories underlying how we teach? In this workshop we will explore the opportunities available to you as GP tutors for UCL to develop your teaching skills and receive accreditation for your educational experience.

Dr Karen Matthewman SFHEA

DR Karen Mathews
Karen is a Lecturer (Teaching) who specialises in UCL’s Arena Fellowship scheme and related mentoring opportunities and educational enhancement.is a Lecturer (Teaching) who specialises in UCL’s Arena Fellowship scheme and related mentoring opportunities and educational enhancement.

Dr Alex Standen

Dr Alex Standen, SFHEA
  Alex is an Associate Director (Education & Practice Development) and Associate Professor (Teaching). She specialises in Staff development opportunities, Leading Change in Education programme and educational enhancement.

Dr Sara Thompson, FHEA

Dr Sara Thompson
Sara is an Associate Clinical Lecturer, Primary Care and Population Health and a GP in Cambridgeshire. She has an interest in faculty development and Preventative Medicine. Outside of work she is also a yoga teacher and enjoys getting outdoors as much as possible. 




Afternoon workshop 3

Workshop title: I guess I’ll wait to hear”: learning from patients’ experiences of blood test communication in primary care'' by Dr Jess Watson, NIHR Academic Clinical Lecturer, Centre for Academic Primary Care (CAPC),  Population Health Sciences,  Bristol Medical School.

Blood testing is an almost universal experience – most doctors will have had a blood test themselves at some point. Although doctors are trained to see blood tests as a routine, perhaps relatively trivial intervention, in most other contexts blood is laden with mystery and deeper meanings. In this workshop Dr Watson will use a mix of research, patient stories and poetry to explore patients’ lived experiences of blood testing. We will reflect on how this experience can be impacted by test communication, particularly in the context of increasing online access to test results. Participants will have the opportunity to discuss and reflect on clinical cases and their own experiences. By the end of this session, you will have new ideas for teaching, learning and clinical practice.

Dr Jess Watson is a GP and Academic Clinical Lecturer at the University of Bristol. She completed her mixed-methods PhD on the topic of inflammatory marker testing in primary care in 2021, for which she was awarded the SAPC Doctoral Prize and the North American Primary Care Research Group Reciprocal Award in 2022. She has an interest in the rational use of blood tests for primary care diagnosis, and communication of blood tests between doctors and patients. Outside of work she is a busy Mum of four and enjoys outdoor swimming and playing the violin.

Dr J Watson
 Dr Jess Watson: https://research-information.bris.ac.uk/en/persons/jessica-c-watson 





Primary Care Medical Education  Conference Awards

The UCL Primary Care Medical Education teaching team value Community and GPs' contribution to teaching, and admire that tutors are helping inspire and train the next generation of doctors. For this reason, we introduced the Community & GP Tutors' Conference Awards to recognise and celebrate the excellent teaching our students are receiving from Community & GP providers.

We will be contacting the shortlisted practices & community service providers at the end of February 2023. Shortlisted practices & community service providers are invited to attend the conference and winners will be announced during the conference award ceremony.

Excellent teacher demonstrating 'good teaching practice' award

All Tutors are invited to nominate themselves for this award and demonstrate excellence in teaching. The application involves writing up to 750 words on the following areas of teaching, using examples of:

Facilitation of student learning Feedback Assessment Innovation


Please fill in the 

 and send to pcphmeded@ucl.ac.uk by 6th February 2023.

We will notify you if your application has been shortlisted and will inform the winner by mid-February 2023. We kindly ask you to attend the conference to receive your award and give a speech of up to 5 minutes, if you are successful.