Council Member Profiles

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Neil Smart

Chair SHTG Council, Consultant Anaesthetist - NHS GG&C

Neil Smart trained in Glasgow, Adelaide and Sheffield before taking up a post as a consultant anaesthetist in Glasgow in 1994. He has a wide range of interests in health technology assessment, quality improvement and procurement. He chairs the Scottish Health Technologies Council, is a European Commission Advisor for Medical Devices and in vitro diagnostic devices, chairs the Dressings and Sundries Steering Group with NHSGG+C, and is an Honorary Clinical Senior Lecturer at the University of Glasgow. He also sits as a medical member with the Medical Practitioner Tribunal Service, GMC.

Safia Qureshi

Director of Evidence, HIS

Safia is Director of Evidence and leads our work on the development of national evidence-based advice, guidance and standards and the assessment of new technologies and newly licensed medicines.

Before joining Healthcare Improvement Scotland, Safia has held a number of senior roles in NHS Scotland including Programme Director at NSS and Director of Quality, Innovation and People at the Golden Jubilee National Hospital. At the Scottish National Blood Transfusion Service she was responsible for delivering the Jack Copland Centre, the state of the art manufacturing facility and headquarters for SNBTS.

She holds an MSc in Healthcare Management and a PhD in Reproductive Biology.

Ed Clifton

SHTG Unit Head HIS

Ed Clifton is the Unit Head of the Scottish Health Technologies Group (SHTG). Ed’s focus for SHTG is to ensure that HTA is relevant, flexible and timely towards better quality health and care in Scotland. 

Prior to his current role, Ed has gained over 10 years of experience working as an economist within NHSScotland. He completed his qualifications at the University of Sheffield, where Ed was awarded the University of Sheffield Gilbert Prize in Economics. 

Hilda Emengo

Lead Health Service Researcher, HIS

Hilda is the lead for the Technologies Team, part of the Research and Information Service within Healthcare Improvement Scotland. As part of her role, Hilda leads the Scottish Health Technologies Group’s (SHTG’s) innovation portfolio in providing advice to support decision making on the use of innovative technologies. Hilda has a background in pharmacy and public health, and has worked across different specialties. Hilda’s work demonstrates her commitment to working in partnership with other stakeholders across public, private and third sectors as well as the Scottish Government and internationally, to deliver improvements. She is passionate about using her wealth of experience in health policy and research to improve health outcomes, reduce inappropriate variation in access and create a sustainable health and social care system.

Colin Marsland

Director of Finance, NHS Shetland

Laura Ryan

Medical Director NHS 24, Scottish Patient Safety Fellow

Dr. Laura Ryan is the Medical Director with NHS 24.

Areas of expertise:

Laura applies clinical expertise to develop and govern systems and processes which will support, enable and empower the Scottish population to live longer healthier lives.  User lead design and a commitment to meaningful stakeholder engagement inform how best the organisation can support delivery of strategic aims of NHS 24, our partners and the Scottish Government.  She invests focus on optimising the whole system interface between all organisations delivering urgent care, both in and out of hours to ensure quality for service users. She still does regular out of hours GP sessions and has just completed an MSc at the University of Edinburgh on Global eHealth.

Rodolfo Hernandez

Health Economics Research Unit (HERU), University of Aberdeen

Karen Facey

Senior Research Fellow at University of Edinburgh

Karen Facey is a Chartered Statistician and Honorary Member of the Faculty of Public Health. She works internationally as an Evidence-Based Health Policy Consultant, specialising in health technology assessment (HTA). Karen originally worked as a statistician in medicines development and regulation and was a member of the UK regulatory committee for safety of medical devices for over 8 years. In 2000 she established the Health Technology Board for Scotland, the first national HTA body in Scotland. She has been self-employed since 2003 working internationally in the field of HTA and for over a decade led the development of the resource allocation formula for health boards in Scotland. She was the lead editor of the book on patient involvement in HTA published in 2017 and has helped SHTG developed its patient involvement processes.

Claire Fernie

HIS Public Partner

Claire has had a lifelong interest in healthcare and worked for many years as a research chemist and within the pharmacy sector. About 10 years ago she semi-retired, partly due to ill health, and was keen to use her own experiences of the healthcare system in a positive way. As those with direct daily knowledge of their circumstances, she feels it’s important that patients and carers are meaningfully involved in developing safe, evidence-based health services. She became a Public Partner with Healthcare Improvement Scotland (HIS) at the start of 2018 and joined the Scottish Health Technologies Group (SHTG) a year later.

Being a part of SHTG allows her an insight into new and cutting-edge developments in health technologies and to be part of discussions into their potential benefits to Scottish healthcare. As a lay person, she offers a different perspective to the clinicians, economists and healthcare managers, and values being involved in transforming the very technical language used within SHTG products into plain language summaries for patients and the general public.

Katie Hislop

Policy Lead, Healthcare Quality and Improvement Directorate

Katie is a the policy lead for Health Technologies and for Scottish Government sponsorship of the Scottish Health Technology Group. She is a career civil servant and has worked across a variety of areas of policy development and delivery.

Mark Cook

Chair of Life Science Scotland Industrial Leadership Group & Chair of ABHI Scotland

Jim Miller

NHS 24 Chief Executive

Jim Miller was appointed as NHS 24's Chief Executive from April 2021

Jim has over 30 years of experience across the private and public sectors in commercial, service delivery and senior leadership roles.

Having worked at a senior level in areas including aviation, construction and public organisations he joined the NHS in 2006 as Director of Strategic Sourcing. He served as a Non-Executive Shadow Board Member during the creation of Scotland’s regional colleges before becoming the Director of Procurement Commissioning and Facilities for NHS Scotland in 2015.

Jim’s role was central to many areas of the NHS response to Covid-19 including the provision of PPE and other equipment, infection prevention and control guidance and infrastructure capacity. 

David A Dunkley OBE

HIS Public Partner

David has had a long and distinguished career in the Civil Service.  He started his working life as a salmon fishery research biologist and went onto represent UK(Scotland) in various international fora.  He was part of the EU Delegation to the North Atlantic Salmon Conservation Organisation (NASCO), a UN Treaty Organisation established to regulate fisheries for salmon in the North Atlantic.

David retired and was awarded the OBE for services to salmon and freshwater fisheries and conservation in the 2009 New Year’s Honours List.

 Currently, David is a Public Partner with Healthcare Improvement Scotland serving on the Acute Care Portfolio Advisory Group, SPSP Acute Adult Collaborative:Steering Group, Scottish Health Technologies Group (Evidence Review Team, Work Programme Committee), National Cancer Medicines Advisory Group, Service Change Team.  He also serves on the HIS Reader Panel.

Fatim Lakha

Consultant in Public Health Medicine

Fatim Lakha is a Consultant in Public Health Medicine at Public Health Scotland and NHS Tayside with the remit of Health Care Public Health (Secondary care and acute services). She has a background in general practice and holds an MD, a masters with distinction in Public Health Sciences and a masters with distinction in HTA. She is an honorary assistant professor at LSHTM and an honorary consultant in Public Health at UKHSA.

She is passionate about working to reduce inequalities and ensure high quality, equitable, health and social care through effective systems, positive leadership and collaborative approaches. She has worked in multiple levels of the health and social care system from primary care, secondary care, at health board level, within NGOs, academia and at policy level within government (both nationally and internationally)

Last Updated: 8 December 2022