Collaboration for Compassion in Healthcare Education (C4CHEd) logo
This virtual event was our 3rd conference. The presenters approached the subject from different perspectives and from varying backgrounds but all highlighted the evidence and impact of compassionate practice on improving patient care as well as staff wellbeing. 
Compassion is a powerful and clinically relevant skill and the growing body of evidence and the increasing number of professionals who are embracing, researching and teaching the concept was reflected in the content of the day. 
As with the previous conferences, the generosity of the presenters who do not get a fee and the support of the University of Plymouth meant that this conference was free to attend – compassion in action as well as in content!
Recordings of the previous meetings are available via the above C4CHEd link.

C4CHEd 2022 speakers

  • Kathryn Bamforth, Torbay and South Devon NHS Foundation Trust and University of Plymouth

    Kathryn Bamforth

  • Dr Anna Baverstock, Consultant in Community Child Health

    Dr Anna Baverstock

  • Dr Roshni Beeharry, Storied Selves

    Dr Roshni Beeharry

  • Avril Bellinger

    Avril Bellinger

  • Kate Clarke, graduate entry medical student, University of Warwick and Healthcare Assistant 

    Kate Clarke

  • Teena Clouston, College of Biomedical and Life Sciences, Cardiff University

    Professor Teena Clouston

  • Lesley Goodburn, NHS England Experience of Care Lead

    Lesley Goodburn

  • Professor Jeremy Howick, University of Leicester

    Professor Jeremy Howick

  • Dr Gemma Hurley, City, University of London

    Dr Gemma Hurley

  • Dr Alison James, Cardiff University

    Dr Alison James

  • Dr Debbie Ling, Monash University

    Dr Debbie Ling

  • Annie Mitchell, Clinical and Community Psychologist, Visiting Specialist, University of Plymouth, Associate of Doctorate of Clinical Psychology, University of Exeter

    Annie Mitchell

  • India Pinker, University of St Andrews

    India Pinker

  • Sue Spencer, an Associate Editor for the BMJ Journal Medical Humanities

    Sue Spencer

  • Dr Sarah Tobin, Lecturer
in the School of Nursing and Midwifery

    Dr Sarah Tobin

  • Dr Andy Ward, University of Leicester

    Dr Andy Ward

  • Professor Michael West CBE, Senior Visiting Fellow at The King’s Fund, London and Professor of Organisational Psychology at Lancaster University, Visiting Professor at University College, Dublin, and Emeritus Professor at Aston University

    Professor Michael West CBE

Kathryn Bamforth, Torbay and South Devon NHS Foundation Trust and University of Plymouth

Kathryn is a Clinical Research Team Leader at Torbay and South Devon NHS Foundation Trust and a Doctoral Research Fellow at the University of Plymouth. Her PhD study explores the psychological wellbeing of healthcare professionals.

Dr Anna Baverstock, Somerset NHS Foundation Trust

Anna is a consultant in community child health looking after children with complex neurodisability and their families. She is lead for senior doctor wellbeing within her trust, a new innovative role that links to organisation development and leadership. She leads the trust civility working group and works closely with the inclusion team developing awareness and action around kindness and inclusion. A recent project has been the creation of videos and allyship workshops.

Anna is a trained coach, mediator and Schwartz round facilitator. Her philosophy is, ‘how do we ensure the first patient of the shift and the last get the same kind, safe care’? We must look after ourselves and our teams during our working day to enable this.

Dr Roshni Beeharry, Storied Selves

Roshni is a Medical Educator, former Consultant in Neurological Rehabilitation Medicine, poet, writer, Writing for Wellbeing and Personal Development facilitator, who trained on the seminal MA in Creative Writing and Personal Development at University of Sussex in 2003–05. She is currently Teaching Fellow in Communication Skills and Cultural Competence, GKT Medical School, King’s College London, as well as holding a portfolio of sessional tutor roles at QMUL, Lancaster and Dundee Medical Schools.

Her academic interests include the Health Humanities, reflective practice, interprofessional education, professional identity formation, and the role the Arts, in particular Creative Writing, can play in these areas of healthcare education, as well as in Arts in Health.

In October 2020, Roshni set up her own writing for wellbeing practice, Storied Selves to provide writing workshops for wellbeing and personal development, for the public and for those in the caring professions (including NHS and HEE staff groups) to provide a safe, facilitated space for participants to explore emotions and experiences, and hopefully rediscover their creativity.

Roshni's poetry and fiction has been published in the UK and internationally, and she has been placed in several international poetry competitions.

Avril Bellinger, University of Plymouth/Students and Refugees Together (START)

Avril Bellinger (Butler) has been a social worker and academic activist for over 40 years with interests in mental health, emancipatory practice and international education.

She founded the non-government organisation Students and Refugees Together (START) 21 years ago and continues to explore the strengths approach as a positive response to complex difficulties.

Kate Clarke, Warwick University

Kate is a graduate entry medical student at the University of Warwick and works as a Healthcare Assistant. She is President of University of Warwick’s Oncology and Palliative Medicine Society. Kate is interested in teaching and maintaining empathy and compassion within medical education. 

Her most recent research involved investigating how clinical role models influence empathy development in both nursing and medical students.

Professor Teena Clouston, Cardiff University

Biography to follow.

Ruth Gaballa, Senior Lecturer in Mental Health Nursing, Liverpool John Moores University

Lesley Goodburn, NHS England Experience of Care Lead

In 2014 Lesley's husband Seth died from pancreatic cancer 33 short and heart-breaking days after diagnosis. Since then Lesley has pursued three aims in memory of him: to raise awareness of the signs and symptoms of pancreatic cancer, to raise awareness of the psychological support needed for patients and families when there is a late diagnosis with a short prognosis, and to improve end-of-life care.

Eight years later Lesley is involved in research, campaigns for improved treatment and investment in pancreatic cancer and continues to share Seth's story to improve end-of-life care. 

Find about more about the film that share Seth and Lesley's story, the play and educational resources [URL to be advised]

Professor Jeremy Howick, Stoneygate Centre for Excellence in Empathic Healthcare, University of Leicester

Award winning Oxford philosopher and medical researcher, Jeremy is internationally known for his research on evidence-based medicine, placebo effects and empathy. He has published three books including The Philosophy of Evidence-Based Medicine and Doctor You (Amazon #1 bestseller). 

As an expert he has appeared on the BBC, ITV and Channel 4 as well as a number of newspapers including The Guardian, The Times, Men’s Health and the Daily Mail.

Dr Gemma Hurley, City, University of London

A Registered General Nurse (RGN) since 1990 Gemma has worked as an Advanced Nurse Practitioner in primary care settings across the country since 2000. She was Senior Lecturer at St Georges University, London and Kingston University, London between 2006–22, and has led and developed postgraduate programme in MSc Advanced Clinical Practice and Physician Associate Studies. 

Gemma recently joined City, University of London in 2022 as Associate Professor in Advanced Clinical Practice (ACP) and led on the successful accreditation of MSc ACP programmes for both St Georges University and City, University of London through the centre for advancing practice at Health Education England. 

She completed her professional Doctorate in Education entitled ‘A Hermeneutic Phenomenological Study to explore how Nurse Educators make meaning of compassion and understand its role in their professional practice in a Higher Education Institution in the United Kingdom’. Gemma presented the study’s findings at the 2022 international Nurse Education Today/Nurse Education Practice Conference, and the recent publication can be accessed at

Dr Alison H James, Cardiff University

Alison is a Reader in Healthcare Leadership at the School of Healthcare Sciences at Cardiff University and Senior Fellow of the HEA. A Registered General Nurse, Alison teaches across the undergraduate and postgraduate programmes in healthcare. Her research interests are predominantly in leadership, organisational cultures, quality improvement and innovation, and Action Learning. 

Alison has an MA in Healthcare Law and Ethics and is a Doctor of Advanced Healthcare Practice (Cardiff University). With colleagues David Stanley and Clare Bennett, Alison’s recent book Clinical Leadership in Nursing and Healthcare, third edition is now available from Wiley (ISBN: 978-1-119-86934-4).

Dr Debbie Ling, Monash University

Debbie is a lecturer and compassion and common humanity researcher at Monash University, Australia. Debbie, Professor Craig Hassed and Dr Richard Chambers developed the award-winning Monash “Compassion Training for Healthcare Workers” online course which was launched in 2022 and has attracted participants from around the world. 

Debbie is also a member of the Australian Compassion Council, Charter for Compassion Australia.

Annie Mitchell, Clinical and Community Psychologist, Visiting Specialist, University of Plymouth, Associate of Doctorate of Clinical Psychology, University of Exeter

Annie is a Devon-based clinical psychologist and psychotherapist, mentor for the Point of Care Schwarz Programme and Playback Theatre actor. She was Clinical Director for the Doctorate in Clinical Psychology at the University of Exeter and latterly the University of Plymouth. 

She worked clinically with children with disabilities, people with chronic pain and in renal medicine. Her inspiration comes from community psychology: grasping the social determinants of health, and seeing positive change coming through power sharing, inclusivity and kindness. She held an innovative research programme, '', aimed at shifting the NHS research culture towards being more "radical, relevant and really really useful". 

More recently she was a founder of UK Extinction Rebellion Psychologists, realising, as António Guterres, UN Secretary-General, put it: we are on a "pathway to hell" unless we act to radically transform our ways of being together, and that the changes we need are those that would generate happier, fairer and healthier lives in very many ways.

Dr Kate Owen, University of Warwick

Biography to follow.

India Pinker, University of St Andrews

India is a PhD student in the School of Medicine at the University of St Andrews. She researches and writes on clinical empathy in practice and has a background in healthcare communication and health psychology. As part of her PhD thesis, she investigates and synthesises current theories on clinical empathy to try to streamline the concept to encourage its integration in medical practice. 

She is currently adapting a novel training tool for healthcare professionals that promotes clinical empathy, specifically to harness its benefits in medical settings.

Sue Spencer, Associate Editor for the BMJ Journal Medical Humanities

Sue is an Associate Editor for the BMJ Journal Medical Humanities and is a passionate advocate for exploring intersectional ideas in healthcare – particularly in investigating how we can promote epistemic justice.

Sue has worked as a senior nurse in the NHS and the third sector. She also worked as an academic in interprofessional working and practice development, most recently working in the Faculty of Arts and Humanities at Newcastle University. While working there she offered poetry sessions as an antidote and remedy for stress, overwhelm and busyness.

Sue has worked with a wide range of professionals to augment reflective practice and practice/professional development using creative writing and expressive visual art practices. She is keen to broaden the discussions about this and enhance the evidence base for these activities in continuing professional development.

Dr Sarah Tobin, University of Plymouth

Sarah is a lecturer in the School of Nursing and Midwifery at the University of Plymouth. Sarah also works as a Clinical Nurse Specialist at Torbay Hospital in South Devon. Convinced that compassion is a clinically relevant skill and one that needed greater recognition and understanding Sarah based her MSC and PhD research on the concept.

Sarah set up the Collaboration for Compassion in Healthcare Education (C4CHEd) to help promote discussion, research and educational initiatives in compassionate practice.

Dr Andy Ward, University of Leicester

Andy works as a GP at Inclusion Heathcare in Leicester, providing primary care for people experiencing homelessness. He has a long history in medical education and is an Associate Professor in Medical Education at Leicester Medical School where he leads a large module in the early years of the curriculum covering communication skills, examination skills, diagnostic reasoning, patient safety, diversity and patient-centred care. 

 He is Education lead for the Stonygate Centre for Excellence in Empathic Healthcare with the aim of developing and delivering empathy-focused training for undergraduate and postgraduate healthcare students and professionals.

Professor Michael West CBE

Michael is Senior Visiting Fellow at The King’s Fund, London and Professor of Organisational Psychology at Lancaster University, Visiting Professor at University College, Dublin, and Emeritus Professor at Aston University, where he was formerly Executive Dean of Aston Business School.

He graduated from the University of Wales in 1973 and was awarded a PhD in 1977 for research on the psychology of meditation. He has authored, edited and co-edited 20 books and has published more than 200 articles in scientific and practitioner publications on teamwork, innovation, leadership, and culture, particularly in healthcare. He is a Fellow of the British Psychological Society, the American Psychological Association (APA), the APA Society for Industrial/Organisational Psychology, the Academy of Social Sciences, the International Association of Applied Psychologists and the British Academy of Management. He is an Honorary Fellow of the Royal College of Physicians and Surgeons of Glasgow and an Honorary Fellow of Royal College of Surgeons of Ireland, Faculty of Nursing and Midwifery.

He led the English Department of Health Policy Research Programme into cultures of quality and safety. He also led the NHS National Staff Survey development and initial implementation. He assisted in developing the national framework on improvement and leadership development in England (Developing People, Improving Care – 2016) and in Northern Ireland in developing the Collective Leadership Strategy for Health and Social Care (2017). He is supporting Health Education and Improvement Wales to develop the national health and care compassionate leadership strategy in Wales. He co-chaired with Dame Denise Coia the two-year inquiry on behalf of the UK General Medical Council into the mental health and wellbeing of doctors 'Caring for Doctors, Caring for Patients' (2019). He led the review for The King’s Fund (commissioned by the RCN Foundation) into the mental health and wellbeing of nurses and midwives across the UK, The Courage of Compassion: Supporting Nurses and Midwives to Deliver High Quality Care (2020). His latest book (2021) is Compassionate leadership: Sustaining wisdom, humanity and presence in health and social care (London: Swirling Leaf Press).

He was appointed a CBE in the Queen’s Birthday Honours List 2020 for services to compassion and innovation in healthcare.