Professor Judith Smith

Professor Judith Smith

Health Services Management Centre
Professor of Health Policy and Management

Contact details

Address
School of Social Policy, HSMC
Park House
University of Birmingham
Edgbaston
Birmingham
B15 2RT, United Kingdom

Judith Smith is Professor of Health Policy and Management. She is Director of the BRACE Rapid Evaluation Centre funded by the National Institute for Health Research for five years (2018-2023) and involving the University of Birmingham, University of Cambridge, RAND Europe, and National Voices. From 2015 until January 2022, Judith was Director of the Health Services Management Centre.

She is a highly experienced and widely published health services researcher and policy analyst, specialising in health care organisation and management, having spent over 25 years working in health services research and development, following an earlier career as a senior manager in the NHS. Her main research interests are: the organisation and management of primary care; long-term conditions and integrated care; health purchasing and commissioning; the development and evaluation of health care organisation and service delivery; and health care management and governance. 

In December 2020, Judith was appointed as Deputy Director of the National Institute for Health Research (NIHR) Health and Social Care Delivery Research Programme.  She is a Trustee and Deputy Chair of Health Services Research UK.   Judith also holds the role of Director of Health Services Research within Birmingham Health Partners.

Qualifications

  • PhD in Health Services Management, University of Birmingham, 2009
  • MBA in Business Administration, Open University Business School, 1999
  • Diploma in Health Services Management, Institute of Health Services Management, 1990
  • BA (Hons) in French Language and Literature, University of Birmingham, 1987

Biography

Judith Smith is Professor of Health Policy and Management in the Health Services Management Centre at the University of Birmingham.  She is a highly experienced and widely published health services researcher and policy analyst, specialising in health care organisation and management. 

In 2015 Judith was appointed as Director of the Health Services Management Centre and in this role she was responsible for a team of 60 academic and professional services staff whose core purpose is to undertake high quality health services management and organisational research and development, ensuring that findings are rigorous, relevant and applicable to both policy and practice.

Prior to her role at HSMC Judith spent six years as Director of Policy at the Nuffield Trust - an independent charitable research foundation based in London – where she led a team of researchers and analysts whose work focused on primary and community health care, long-term conditions, health commissioning, the monitoring and assurance of health and social care quality, and the quest for integrated care. 

From 2007-2009 Judith was based in New Zealand working as Visiting Senior Research Fellow at the Health Services Research Centre in the Victoria University of Wellington and (from 2008-2009) as Senior Policy Fellow in the New Zealand Ministry of Health.

Judith maintains an active portfolio of research projects, funded by a range of national and local bodies, and all focused on study of the ways in which the organisation and delivery of health services might be further improved.  Current and recent projects include:

 - the National Evaluation of Integrated Care and Support Pioneers (funded by the National Institute for Health Research (NIHR) Policy Research Programme, and led by LSHTM) https://piru.ac.uk/projects/current-projects/integrated-care-pioneers-evaluation.html

 - a study of Hospital Board Leadership following the Francis Inquiry Report (funded by the NIHR Policy Research Programme and led by the University of Manchester) https://www.birmingham.ac.uk/news/2018/changes-in-board-leadership-and-governance-in-acute-hospitals-in-england-since-2013

 - a rapid evaluation of the implementation of Primary Care Networks in the NHS in England (for NIHR) https://www.birmingham.ac.uk/research/brace/projects/early-implementation-of-primary-care-networks.aspx

 - a study of the use of remote outpatient consultations in NHS trusts during the COVID-19 pandemic (for Birmingham Health Partners).  

Judith is Director of the BRACE Rapid Service Evaluation Centre that has been funded by the National Institute of Health Research (NIHR) for five years (2018-2023) and this is a partnership between the University of Birmingham, RAND Europe, the University of Cambridge, and National Voices.  More information about the BRACE Centre is available here: https://www.birmingham.ac.uk/research/brace/index.aspx 

Judith is Deputy Director of the National Institute for Health Research's Health and Social Care Delivery Research Programme. More information about the HSDR funding programme is available here: https://www.nihr.ac.uk/explore-nihr/funding-programmes/health-and-social-care-delivery-research.htm

Judith is a member of the core team of Birmingham Health Partners where she is Director of Health Services Research https://www.birminghamhealthpartners.co.uk/members/professor-judith-smith/

She is a trustee and Deputy Chair of Health Services Research UK, the national membership body for health services researchers https://hsruk.org/

She has previously served as a Non-Executive Director of the Birmingham Women's and Children's NHS Foundation Trust (2014-2022) and South Birmingham Primary Care Trust (2002-2004), and was a board member of the European Health Management Association (2004-2006). 

In 2013, Judith was appointed Chair of the Royal Pharmaceutical Society’s Commission on Future Models of Care.  From 2010-2013 she served as Expert Adviser to the Mid-Staffordshire NHS Foundation Trust Public Inquiry and then as an Assessor of the Inquiry's recommendations.

 

Teaching

Judith contributes teaching sessions to the Healthcare Management MSc module, the Degree Apprenticeship in Health and Social Care Leadership, and the intercalated degree in Healthcare Management and Leadership.

Judith is also a personal tutor to participants on the MSc Degree Apprenticeship in Health and Social Care Leadership.

Research

 

Professor Judith Smith is a health services researcher and policy analyst, with a focus  on health care organisation and management.  Her particular research interests are:

 - long-term conditions and integrated care

 - the organisation and management of primary care, including in the international context

 - health commissioning and purchasing

 - the evaluation of health care organisation and service delivery

 - health care management, governance and culture.

Although her own research is largely qualitative, she has a strong commitment to mixed methods studies with a significant quantitative and economic element, and has extensive experience of leading and taking part in research and evaluation studies that are defined by this collaborative and mixed method approach.

Judith has a strong interest in research impact and in particular in the relationship between health services research and the health management community and this is increasingly a core part of her academic endeavour and one for which she is often sought out at a national level. This commitment is rooted in her career experience that has spanned health management, research and policy analysis, working in NHS hospitals, universities in the UK and overseas, as a government advisor, and in a health research foundation.

 

Other activities

Judith is a member of the following: 

  • Fellow of the Royal Society of Medicine
  • European Health Policy Group
  • Health Services Research UK
  • Health Services Research Association of Australia and New Zealand 

Judith also holds the following visiting academic appointments: 

  • Visiting Professor, Department of Health Services Research and Policy, London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine (2015-) 
  • Adjunct Professor, Health Services Research Centre, Victoria University, Wellington (2017-) 
  • Senior Associate, the Nuffield Trust for Research and Policy Studies in Health (2015-)

Publications

Recent publications

Article

Lewis, RQ, Checkland, K, Durand, MA, Ling, T, Mays, N, Roland, M & Smith, JA 2021, 'Integrated care in England – what can we learn from a decade of National Pilot Programmes?', International Journal of Integrated Care, vol. 21, no. 4, 5. https://doi.org/10.5334/ijic.5631

Parkinson, S, Smith, J & Sidhu, M 2021, 'The early development of primary care networks in the NHS in England: a qualitative mixed-methods evaluation', BMJ open, vol. 11, no. 12, e055199. https://doi.org/10.1136/bmjopen-2021-055199

Smith, J, Wistow, G, Holder, H & Gaskins, M 2019, 'Evaluating the design and implementation of the whole systems integrated care programme in North West London: why commissioning proved (again) to be the weakest link', BMC Health Services Research, vol. 19, 228. https://doi.org/10.1186/s12913-019-4013-5

Smith, J & Chambers, N 2019, 'Mid-Staffordshire: a case study of failed governance and leadership?', The Political Quarterly, vol. 90, no. 2, pp. 194-201. https://doi.org/10.1111/1467-923X.12698

Chambers, N, Smith, J, Proudlove, N, Thorlby, R, Kendrick, H & Mannion, R 2019, 'Roles and behaviours of diligent and dynamic healthcare boards', Health Services Management Research, vol. 32, no. 4. https://doi.org/10.1177%2F0951484819887507

Chapter (peer-reviewed)

Burn, E, Locock, L, Fisher, R & Smith, J 2021, The Impact of COVID-19 on Primary Care Practitioners: Transformation, Upheaval and Uncertainty. in Organising Care in a Time of Covid-19: Implications for Leadership, Governance and Policy. <https://link.springer.com/book/10.1007/978-3-030-82696-3#about-book-content>

Comment/debate

Rebecca Fisher & Smith, J 2022, 'The Messenger Review: a missed opportunity for primary care', British Medical Journal, vol. 377, o1427. https://doi.org/10.1136/bmj.o1427

Fisher, R, Smith, J, Sidhu, M, Parkinson, S & Alderwick, H 2021, 'NHS reform: Five key questions about the future of primary care networks in England', The Health Foundation. <https://www.health.org.uk/publications/long-reads/nhs-reform>

Smith, J & Harshfield, A 2019, 'Primary care networks: a marathon not a sprint', Health Service Journal. <https://www.hsj.co.uk/primary-care/primary-care-networks-a-marathon-not-a-sprint/7025889.article>

Mannion, R & Smith, J 2017, 'Hospital culture and clinical performance: where next?', BMJ Quality & Safety. https://doi.org/10.1136/bmjqs-2017-007668

Commissioned report

Smith, J, Parkinson, S, Harshfield, A & Sidhu, M 2020, Early evidence of the development of primary care networks in England: a rapid evaluation study. https://doi.org/10.3310/hsdr-tr-129678

Ignatowicz, A, Crump, H, Lasserson, D & Smith, J 2020, Strategy evidence review for the Birmingham and Solihull Sustainability and Transformation Partnership. Birmingham and Solihull Clinical Commissioning Group, Birmingham.

Smith, J, Parkinson, S, Harshfield, A & Sidhu, M 2020, The early implementation of primary care networks in the NHS in England: a rapid evaluation study. National Institute for Health Research.

Ellins, J, Griffith, L, Rosen, R, Miller, R, Brown, H & Smith, J 2017, Evaluation of the Connected Care Partnership Vanguard: Scoping and early findings report. NHS England.

Editorial

Smith, J, Checkland , K, Sidhu, M, Hammond , J & Parkinson, S 2021, 'Primary care networks: are they fit for the future?', British Journal of General Practice , vol. 71, no. 704, pp. 106-107. https://doi.org/10.3399/bjgp21X714665

View all publications in research portal

Expertise

An expert on the NHS, health policy, primary care and general practice, health funding and commissioning, healthcare leadership and management. Professor Smith is the Director of the Health Services Management Centre and was previously Director of Policy at the Nuffield Trust, an independent charitable health research foundation in London.

Languages and other information

English (native speaker) 

French (fluent speaker)

Media experience

As Director of Policy of a major national health research foundation (2009-2015), my work entailed extensive communication and influencing activity with government, the media, the Department of Health, national representative organisations, and local health and social care bodies.  I continue to undertake this work from my position as Director of HSMC at the University of Birmingham.  

I regularly provide background briefings, write articles and prepare blogs for the print and on-line media.  I have written for the Guardian, Health Service Journal, British Medical Journal, and the Conversation.  I also regularly give interviews to the media, and have appeared on BBC News, BBC News 24, The World Tonight, File on Four, Five Live News, and numerous BBC local news stations.

Expertise

Health and Social care

Professor Judith Smith is an expert on the NHS, health policy, primary care and general practice, health funding and commissioning, healthcare leadership and management.

Policy experience

Judith’s standing in the academic and policy community has been recognised in a number of ways. For example, in 2020 she was asked to form part of two new Colleges of Experts established by UKRI and NIHR to review and fund research commissioned rapidly to understand the Covid-19 pandemic and its implications for health and social care service delivery and organisation in both the UK and global contexts. 

Shewas expert adviser on NHS organisation and commissioning to the Mid-Staffordshire NHS Foundation Trust Public Inquiry, prepared four expert inquiry papers, gave two days of oral expert evidence to the inquiry, and presented at two of the inquiry policy seminars (on commissioning, and trust boards and their leaders).  In November 2012, she was appointed by Robert Francis QC to be an assessor to the Inquiry in relation to policy recommendations. 

Judith has given oral evidence to the Health Select Committee of the House of Commons as part of inquiries into: public expenditure on health; the implementation of the Coalition Government’s health reforms; and care for people with long-term conditions.  She gave oral evidence to the House of Lords 2013 Inquiry into the Inquiries Act, exploring her experience of being an expert adviser and assessor to the Francis Inquiry. 

She was Independent Chair of the Royal Pharmaceutical Society’s Commission on Future Models of Care which resulted in a publication, launched at a Parliamentary conference chaired by Sarah Wollaston MP (Chair of the Health Select Committee), setting out a new direction for pharmacy in England. 

Judith is a Non-Executive Director of the Birmingham Women and Children’s NHS Foundation Trust (2014-), where she is also the Chair of the Trust’s Research and Service Innovation Committee, and a member of the Quality Committee, Audit Committee, and Ethics Advisory Group.  

Judith provides regular advice to the Department of Health and Social Care (DHSC) and NHS England & Improvement in relation to primary care, integrated care, health commissioning, and wider health policy and governance issues.  She also works closely with bodies such as NHS Providers, the British Medical Association, the Royal College of Nursing, National Voices, the National Association of Primary Care, NHS Confederation and the medical royal colleges.

She is listed as an expert in the University of Birmingham Policy experts guide.