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Lucy Brookes-Howell

Dr Lucy Brookes-Howell

Senior Research Fellow - Qualitative

School of Medicine

Available for postgraduate supervision


I am a Senior Research Fellow (Qualitative) and Head of the Qualitative Research Group - Centre for Trials Research - Cardiff University

I began my research career at the Centre for Language and Communication Research training in interactional sociolinguistics. My doctoral research explored diagnostic uncertainty in genetics and society. Following this I developed international networks with discourse researchers and assisted in the launch of the Annual International Conferences on Communication, Medicine & Ethics and acted as Editorial Associate for the journal Communication & Medicine.

I moved to the South East Wales Trials Unit when it was first established in 2006, now Centre for Trials Research. I initially focused on the use of qualitative methods in infections. I then began to broaden my research portfolio to include the use of qualitative methods with under-served groups, and children/young people and parenting, and using qualitative methods with trials.

I am co-investigator on studies currently or recently funded by NIHR (PLACEMENT, TIPTOE, PRONTO, RAPID, SenITA, BATCH), HCRW Research for Patient and Public Benefit (PERCEIVE, PEACH, PLACEMENT, TRIDENT), UKRI ESRC Council (OSCAR), and Charity Action for Children (MIST). I supervise students at Doctoral and Masters level, and as Fellowship Advisor.

My research interests include:

  • Health communication
  • Patient voices
  • Children, young people and parenting
  • Infections
  • Using qualitative methods with under-served groups
  • Qualitative methods and trials
  • Large-scale, multi-country qualitative research design





















Book sections



Current and Recent Grants

  • Perineural local anaesthetic catheter after major lower limb amputation trial (PLACEMENT). 2022-2026. Funder: NIHR. £1,635,918. Co-investigator. Chief Investigator: Dave Bosanquet.   
  • Multi-domain self-management in older people with Osteoarthritis with multiple-morbidities (TIPTOE). 2023-2026. Funder: NIHR. £1,715,355. Co-investigator. Chief Investigator: Kate Button. 
  • PROcalcitonin and NEWS2 evaluation for Timely identification of sepsis and Optimal use of antibiotics in the Emergency Department (PRONTO). Funder: NIHR HTA Programme. £1,968,786. Co-investigator. Chief Investigator: Neil French.
  • Prediction of risk and communication of outcomes following major lower limb amputation: a collaborative study. Health and Care Research Wales (PERCEIVE). £229,225. Co-investigator. Chief Investigator: Dave Bosanquet.
  • Procalcitonin: Evaluation of Antibiotic use in COVID-19 Hospitalised patients (PEACH). Funder: NIHR COVID Learning and Recovery Call. £731,858. Co-investigator and Work Package LeadChief Investigator: Jon Sandoe/Enitan Carrol.
  • Establishing the impact of COVID-19 on the health of domiciliary care workers in Wales: developing a model for UK service planning and carer support (OSCAR). Funder: UKRI ESRC Council. £419,092. Co-investigator. Chief Investigator: Mike Robling, Rebecca Cannings-John.
  • Understanding multi-party communication in therapy sessions for children with Autism Spectrum Disorder and SPD. School of Medicine Studentship Programme. Chief Investigator and Lead Supervisor.
  • Title: TRIal designs for DElivery of Novel Therapies for Neurodegeneration (TRIDENT). Funder: Health & Care Research Wales, Research for Patient and Public Benefit Wales (RfPPB). £223,132.00. Co-investigator. Chief Investigator: Ann Rosser. 
  • Title: Biomarker-guided duration of Antibiotic Treatment in Children Hospitalised with confirmed or suspected bacterial infection (The BATCH Trial). Funder: NIHR Health Technology Assessment Programme £1.4 million. Co-investigator. Chief Investigator: Enitan Carrol.
  • Title: Perineural Local Anaesthetic Catheter aftEr Major lowEr limb amputatioN Trial (PLACEMENT). Funder: Health & Care Research Wales, Research for Patient and Public Benefit Wales (RfPPB). £210, 552. Co-investigator. Chief Investigator: Chris Twine. 
  • Title: A pragmatic Randomised Controlled Trial of Sensory Integration Therapy versus usual care for sensory processing difficulties in Autism Spectrum Disorder in children: impact on behavioural difficulties, adaptive skills and socialisation (SenITA). Funder: NIHR Health Technology Assessment Programme. £1,185,180. Co-investigator. Chief Investigator: Rachel McNamara. 
  • Title: Pragmatic RAndomised controlled trial of a trauma-focused guided self help Programme versus InDividual Trauma-Focused Cognitive Behavioural Therapy for post traumatic stress disorder (RAPIDTFCBT). Funder: NIHR Health Technology Assessment Programme. £1,135,332.88. Co-investigator. Chief Investigator: Jon Bisson. 
  • Realist evaluation of the multi-disciplinary intervention service Torfaen (MIST). Funder: Action for Children. £30,292. Co-investigator. Chief Investigator: Sue Channon. 



  • 2002 PhD Communication, Cardiff University
  • 1998 PgradDip (Distinction) Language and Communication Research, Cardiff University
  • 1996 BA(Hons) (First class) Language and Communication, Cardiff University

Academic positions

  • 2006-current Research Fellow (Qualitative), Centre for Trials Research, Cardiff University
  • 2004-2006 Research Coordinator, Health Communication Research Centre, Cardiff University
  • 2000-2004 Research Associate, Health Communication Research Centre Cardiff University
  • 1998-2000 Research Assistant, Centre for Language and Communication Research, Cardiff University


I am interested in supervising PhD students, particularly in the areas of:

  • Qualitative methods and trials 
  • Health communication  
  • Patient experiences of health and illness

Current supervision

Eleni Glarou

Eleni Glarou

Research student

Past projects

I have successfully supervised the following PhD students to completion:

  • Dunla Gallagher. The Healthy Eating and Lifestyle in Pregnancy cluster radomised controlled trial: a 24 months postpartum follow-up study. An evaluation of the effect of a weight management intervention for maternal obesity on maternal and child outcomes at 24 months following birth. 2018.
  • Leila Rooshenas. Managing common infections in Day Care settings: Day Care providers' sickness exclusion beliefs, advice, and their consequences for patients. 2012. 

I have also successfully supervised students for the MSc in Genetic Counselling and Master's in Public Health programmes.

External profiles