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Fiona Wood

Professor Fiona Wood


Personal Chair

School of Medicine

+44 29206 87185
Neuadd Meirionnydd, Room 503, University Hospital of Wales, Heath Park, Cardiff, CF14 4YS
Available for postgraduate supervision


I am a medical sociologist with a particular interest in public and patient beliefs and behaviours in relation to common infections in the community. I also have a keen interest in person-centred care which draws on the philosophy of patient empowerment and engaging patients and members of the public in their health and well-being. This may be through shared decision making, inclusion in research, self-management support, and improving health literacy. Finally, I have an interest in health care communication.

I have over 20 years of post-doctoral research experience, during which time I have developed a broad portfolio of expertise particularly in qualitative research methods and qualitative evidence synthesis.

I am lead for Education within the Division of Population Medicine.





























Book sections





Current Grants:

Engaging care home residents in research: identification of barriers and facilitators and the development of an intervention to support residents in decision-making and advance planning for research (ENGAGE study). Funder: HCRW. PhD Studentship. £65,991. Duration: Jan 2022-Dec 2024

Development of an Intervention to Optimise Adherence to Pre-Exposure Prophylaxis (PrEP) for HIV in Wales: A Mixed Methods Study [DO-PrEP]. Post-Doc Fellowship to HCRW. David Gillespie, Mentors – K Hood and F Wood. Funder: HCRW, Amount: £250,000, Duration: Oct 2018-Sept 2021

Multi-Domain Lifestyle Targets for Improving Prognosis in Huntington’s Disease. Applicants: Busse M, Rosser A, Holt C, Wood F, Jones L, Holmans P. Funder: JPND, Alzheimer’s Society. Amount: Euros 624,753. Duration: April 2019-March 2022

Wales Centre for Primary & Emergency Care Research (PRIME). Funder: HCRW £4.6M, 2020-2025. Applicants: Edwards (PI), Kenkre J, Snooks H, Wood F, Brain K, Francis N, Chestnut I.

IMproving Prophylactic Antibiotic use for Recurrent urinary Tract infection (IMPART): mixed-methods study to address evidence gaps and develop a decision aid. NIHR PhD application, Leigh Sanyaolu. Supervisors Harry Ahmed, Rebecca Cannings-John, Fiona Wood and Adrian Edwards. Sept 2021-July 2025. £576,735.

Deciding about research for others: a feasibility study and effectiveness trial of a novel decision support intervention for consultees and legal representatives of adults lacking capacity to consent (CONSULT Study). NIHR Advanced Fellowship. Shepherd V. Mentors: Hood K, Wood F, Gillies K, Farrin A. Jan 2021-Dec 2024. £638,662

Previous Grants:

Development and evaluation of a supported self-management life-style exercise and activity package for progressive Multiple Sclerosis. LEAP-MS. Applicants: Busse-Morris M, Edwards A, Davies F, Button K, Wood F, Playle R. Robertson N, Spasic I. Funder: MS Society. £293,296. Feb 2018-June 2021

COVID-19 public experiences in Wales: Understanding attitudes, beliefs, and behaviour in response to the coronavirus pandemic. Lead applicant Philips R. Ser Cymru. 1st Aug 2020- 31st March 2021, £127,871.

Developing a decision aid to support co-production regarding risk and need based recall intervals in general dental practice. Applicants: Cope A, Joseph-Williams N, Wood F, Karki A, Farnell D, Chestnutt I. Funder: HCRW RfPPB, Amount: £197,678. Duration: Oct 2018 – March 2021.

Informed consent and proxy decision making in research involving adults lacking capacity: development of an intervention to support proxy informed decision making, set within ethical and legal frameworks. (PhD Studentship for V Shepherd. F Wood lead supervisor). Funder: NIHR Amount: £266,485. Duration: Oct 2016-Sept 2019

Awareness and Beliefs About Cancer (ABACus): Randomised controlled trial of the health check Yorkshire Cancer Research. Applicants: Brain K, Edwards A, Wood F, Carter B, Smits S, Robling M, Kelson M. Funder: Yorkshire Cancer Research. £486,014. 1st April 2017- 31.08.19

Developing a smoking cessation patient decision aid – scoping phase work. Applicants: Natalie Joseph-Williams (PI), Fiona Wood, Christian Heathcote-Elliott (PHW), Sian Evans (PHW), Ashley Gould (PHW). Public Health Wales. £21,000

Understanding patient perceptions of exercise and conceptual models of pain in a lumbar radicular pain population. Lead: Robert Goldsmith (physiotherapist C&V UHB); PRIME supported: Co-applicants: Nefyn Williams and Fiona Wood, £10K, RCBC First Into Research Fellowship.

Exploring the potential of an ‘app’ to help patients with cancer address their information needs. Funder: Tenovus, Amount: £60,000. Duration: Oct 2013-Sept 2016. Applicants: Wood F, Kinnersley P, Brain K, Staffurth J.

MAGIC 3. Making Good Decisions in Collaboration. Funder: Health Foundation. Amount: £246,000. Duration: Dec 2013-Dec 2015. Applicants: Brain (CI) Joseph-Williams N, Lloyd A, Edwards A, Wood F,

Development and pilot evaluation of the Tenovus health check. Funder: NAEDI. Amount: £135,000. Duration: Sept 2014 – August 2016. Applicants: Brain K (CI), Paranjothy S, Carter B, Wood F, Neal RD et al.

A qualitative study of public and clinicians'views of, and participation in, Prudent Healthcare. Funder: Health and Care Research Wales. £248,000. 2015-2017. Applicants: Wood F (PI), Edwards A, Snooks H, Kenkre J, Neal R, Mead D, Clayton D.

Exploring the transition from relapsing-remitting to secondary progressive MS to inform the production of content programmes for patients and carers, and educational packages for clinicians. Funder: MS Trust. Amount: £50,000. Duration: Sept 2013-Nov 2014. Applicants: Wood and Edwards (co-CIs),

Option Grids: easy to use shared decision making tools for disadvantaged groups. Funder: Bupa Foundation. Amount: £289,000. Duration: Jan 2012 – Dec 2014 Applicants: Wood F and Elwyn G (co-CIs), Edwards A, Brain K, Newcombe R, Nye A, Firth J

Characterising the nature of primary care patient safety incident reports in England and Wales: mixed methods study. Funder: NIHR HS&DR. Amount: £300,000. Duration: Nov 2013 – June 2015. Applicants: Carson-Stevens A (CI), Edwards A, Panesar, Mayor S, Cowie L, Wood F.

Health Beliefs and Behaviour amongst working-class women: Changes over 20 years. Funder: ESRC. Amount: £44,711. Duration: May 2005- July 2006. Applicants: Wood F (CI), Butler C, Robling MR, Kinnersley P, Houston H.


My teaching areas include patient centred care, qualitative research methods, research ethics, health beliefs and behaviour and other aspects of medical sociology at both undergraduate and postgraduate level. I am involved in teaching on the following courses:

  • MBBCh - Evidence Based Medicine Tutorials
  • MBBCh - Year 2 Case Based Learning facilitator
  • MBBCh - Year 1 Platform for Clinical Sciences
  • BSc Population Medicine and BSc Medical Education. Introduction to Qualitative Methods, Advanced Qualitative Methods, Qualitative Data Analysis, Writing a Qualitative Research Protocol. Health Beliefs and Behaviours for Common Infections.
  • MPH (Masters in Public Health). Qualitative Research Methods.


Education and Qualifications

  • 2020: Fellow of the Higher Education Academy
  • 2002: PhD (Medical Sociology), Cardiff University, UK
  • 1997: MSc Methods and Applications of Social Research, Cardiff University, UK
  • 1991: BA (hons) Geography, Manchester University, UK

Career Overview

  • 2020- present: Professor, School of Medicine, Cardiff University
  • 2017 - 2020: Reader, School of Medicine, Cardiff University
  • 2013 - 2017: Senior Lecturer, School of Medicine, Cardiff University
  • 2003-2013: Lecturer, School of Medicine, Cardiff University
  • 1997-2003: Tutorial Fellow, School of Social Sciences, Cardiff University
  • 1995-1997: Research Associate, School of Social Sciences, Cardiff University
  • 1991-1995: Research Officer, Public Health Medicine, Gwent Health Authority

Professional Memberships:

  • Society for Academicy Primary Care (SAPC)
  • International Association for Communication in Healthcare (EACH)
  • International Shared Decision Making Society (ISDM)


  • Board member: FWO Medical Sciences. Belgium. 2019 - present
  • Board member: Scientific Foundation Board of the Royal College of General Practitioners 2014-2019
  • Board member, Health and Care Research Wales Health Grants and Research for Patient Benefit Board Grant, 2012-2017

External Examining:

  • Southampton University, PhD (2013)
  • Bristol University PhD. (2017)

Academic positions

  • Post-Graduate Research Lead for the Division of Population Medicine, School of Medicine.


I am currently supervising the following PhD Students

  • Brittany Nocivelli (primary supervisor): "Engaging care home residents in research: identification of barriers and facilitators and the development of an interention to support residents in decision-making and advance planning for research (ENGAGE Study). Health and Care Research Wales Social Care Studentship. Jan 2022-Dec 2024 
  • Leigh Sanylou (co-supervisor): "IMproving Prophylactic Antibiotic use for Recurrent urinary Tract infection (IMPART): mixed-methods study to address evidence gaps and develop a decision aid." NIHR funded PhD. Sept 2021-July 2025.
  • Hannah Trotman (co-supervisor) "Supporting participation and social connectedness for people with neurological conditions to reduce isolation: empowering through social care, community support, and digital technology". Health and Care Research Wales Social Care Studentship. Jan 2024-Dec 2026
  • Thomas Purchase (co-supervisor) IncorporAting parental health aDVOcaCy when mAnaging unwell Children in primarY care (ADVOCACY): a multi-methods systems approach to co-develop a complex intervention. NIHR Doctoral Fellowship Scheme. 2024-2027

I am interested in supervising students in the areas of:

  • Social aspects of antimicrobial resistance
  • Shared decision making and health care communication.

Current supervision

Adam Williams

Adam Williams

Research Associate - Trial Manager

Brittany Nocivelli

Brittany Nocivelli

Research student

Leigh Sanyaolu

Leigh Sanyaolu

Health and Care Research Wales NIHR Doctoral Fellow

Past projects

I have successfully supervised the following PhD students to completion:

  • Nancy Hawkings (PhD awarded 2009) co-supervisor. "Attitudes to Upper Respiratory Infections, Antibiotics and Bacterial Resistance: Managing common respiratory infections and promoting the appropriate use of antibiotics by the general population"
  • Nick Francis (PhD awarded 2010) co-supervisor. "Development and evaluation of an interactive booklet for use in primary care consultations with children with respiratory tract infections"
  • Michelle Edwards (PhD awarded 2010) co-supervisor.  "The development and practice of health-literacy in patients with a long-term condition through self-directed learning, patient education, and social interaction."
  • Leila Rooshenas (PhD awarded 2012) primary supervisor. "Managing common infections in day care settings: Day care providers' sickness exclusion beliefs, advice, and their consequences for parents."
  • Jana Witt (PhD awarded 2013) co-supervisor. "The Oophorectomy decision explorer: a decision support intervention to faciliate deliberation and coping efforst in women at increased risk of ovarian cancer".
  • Anwen Cope (PhD awarded 2014) President’s Scholarship, co-supervisor."Understanding the use of antibiotics in the management of dental problems in primary care"
  • Grace McCuthcan (PhD awarded 2017). co-supervisor. "Understanding the influences on cancer symptom presentation in the context of socio-economic deprivation: development of a targeted cancer awareness intervention."
  • Becky Richards (PhD awarded 2017). primary supervisor. "Understanding the needs and preferences of patients with cancer regarding an app to help them to meet their information needs: development of the 'Ask Us' cancer app"
  • Freya Davies, PhD (PhD awarded 2019) co-supervisor: "Training health professionals to support self-management among people with multiple sclerosis".
  • Vicky Shepherd. (PhD awarded 2019) primary supervisor: "Informed consent and proxy decision making in research involving adults lacking capacity: development of an intervention to support proxy informed decision making, set within ethical and legal frameworks". Oct 2016-Sept 2019
  • Amber Jordan. (PhD awarded 2021) primary supervisor: "Development of a theory-based intervention to prepare young people to participate in shared decision making about their healthcare". Oct 2016-Sept 2020
  • Jaafer Qasem. (PhD awarded 2023) co-supervisor. "The development and testing of an international patient safety learning system" Jan 2018-Oct 2022
  • Adam Williams (PhD awarded 2024) co-supervisor. “Understanding the relationship between pre-exposure prophylaxis, sexually transmitted infections, and antimicrobial resistance in Wales (UNREST)” KESS2 studentship. Oct 2019-Sept 2023