Dr Jonathan Mathers

Jonathan Mathers

Institute of Applied Health Research
Associate Professor in Qualitative and Mixed Methods Applied Research

Contact details

Institute of Applied Health Research
Murray Learning Centre
University of Birmingham
B15 2TT

Jonathan is an Associate Professor in Qualitative and Mixed Methods Applied Health Research.  He has broad based expertise in the application of qualitative and mixed methods research approaches in a range of applied health and policy contexts.

ORCID ID: 0000-0001-6651-6286


Associate Professor in Qualitative and Mixed Methods Applied Health Research

  • PhD (by publication), University of Birmingham, 2011
  • MPH, University of Birmingham, 2003
  • MSc, University of Hull, 1994
  • BSc, University of Derby, 1993


Jonathan is currently the qualitative research lead for several UK National Institute for Health Research (NIHR) funded studies, that include clinical trials, trial feasibility studies and standalone qualitative research projects.  This research includes qualitative work with patients, parents of paediatric patients and a range of clinical staff.  

He has previously conducted evaluations of complex policy interventions, including projects that have examined the expansion of undergraduate medical education across England, the New Deal for Communities regeneration programme and the English Health Trainers initiative. This work was supported by research funders including the National Institute for Health Research (Policy Research Programme) and the Higher Education Funding Council for England.


Postgraduate supervision

Jonathan is interested in supervising PhD students in areas related to his current research interests.


Jonathan's research interests include the application of qualitative methodologies to understand the patient experience of disease and treatments and how those insights translate to issues including;

  • The content and selection of outcomes for clinical research and practice;
  • the acceptability of treatments and the related feasibility of clinical trials;
  • adaptation to chronic disease and the role of medical and surgical treatments in this including issues related to treatment burden.

Jonathan is currently conducting research in a range of clinical areas including leading qualitative research in Burns aftercare, Inflammatory Bowel Disease, Atrial Fibrillation, Growth Hormone Deficiency and others.

Current projects

  • Co-production of support for parents administering dressing changes at home in paediatric burns (NIHR)
  • Discontinuation of Growth Hormone Therapy in children (NIHR – GHD Reversal Study)
  • TREATS-AF: Educational intervention versus usual care on anticoagulation therapy control based on a
  • SAMe-TT2R2 score-guided therapy (MRC)
  • Enteral nutrition in Crohn’s surgery (OCEAN – NIHR)

Other activities

Jonathan is the Director of the Birmingham Hub of the NIHR West Midlands Research Design Service.  As such he works with a range of applied health researchers and methodologists to support researchers developing applications for research funding to national peer-reviewed funding streams.


Recent publications


Blackwell, S, Clifford, S, Pinkney, T, Thompson, D & Mathers, J 2024, 'Assessment of the quality of online patient information resources for patients considering parastomal hernia treatment', Colorectal Disease, pp. 1-14. https://doi.org/10.1111/codi.16959

Thompson, DM, Bernard, M, Maxfield, B, Halsall, T & Mathers, J 2023, 'Focusing a realist evaluation of peer support for paediatric mental health', Discover Mental Health, vol. 3, no. 1, 18. https://doi.org/10.1007/s44192-023-00045-2

Brettell, E, Högler, W, Woolley, R, Cummins, C, Mathers, J, Oppong, R, Roy, L, Khan, A, Hunt, C & Dattani, M 2023, 'The Growth Hormone Deficiency (GHD) Reversal Trial: effect on final height of discontinuation versus continuation of growth hormone treatment in pubertal children with isolated GHD: a non-inferiority Randomised Controlled Trial (RCT)', Trials, vol. 24, no. 1, 548. https://doi.org/10.1186/s13063-023-07562-z

Jones, J, Jones, L, Calvert, M, Damery, S & Mathers, J 2022, 'A literature review of studies that have compared the use of face-to-face and online focus groups', The International Journal of Qualitative Methods, vol. 21, pp. 1-12. https://doi.org/10.1177/16094069221142406

Young, A, Davies, AM, Tsang, C, Kirkham, JJ, Potokar, T, Gibran, N, Tyack, Z, Meirte, J, Harada, T, Dheansa, B, Dumville, JC, Metcalfe, C, Ahuja, R, Wood, F, Gaskell, S, Brookes, S, Smailes, S, Jeschke, M, Cinar, MA, Zia, N, Moghazy, A, Mathers, J, Falder, S, Edgar, D & Blazeby, JM 2022, 'Establishment of a core outcome set for burn care research: development and international consensus', BMJ Medicine, vol. 1, e000183. https://doi.org/10.1136/bmjmed-2022-000183

Mathers, J, Poyner, C, Thompson, D, Rudge, G & Pritchett, R 2022, 'Exploration of the uptake of asymptomatic COVID-19 lateral flow testing in Birmingham, UK: survey and qualitative research', BMJ open, vol. 12, no. 4, e056606. https://doi.org/10.1136/bmjopen-2021-056606

Thompson, D, Thomas, C, Hyde, L, Wilson, Y, Moiemen, N & Mathers, J 2021, 'At home parent-administered dressing changes in paediatric burns aftercare: a survey of burns centres’ practice', Burns. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.burns.2021.03.012

Thompson, D, Thomas, C, Hyde, L, Wilson, Y, Moiemen, N & Mathers, J 2021, 'At home parent-administered dressing changes in paediatric burns aftercare: interviews on parents’ experiences of treatment', Burns. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.burns.2021.06.005

Poyner, C, Tripathi, D & Mathers, J 2021, 'Exploring patients’ perceptions and experiences of treatments for the prevention of variceal bleeding: a qualitative study', BMJ Open Gastroenterology, vol. 8, no. 1, e000684. https://doi.org/10.1136/bmjgast-2021-000684

NIHR Global Health Research Unit on Global Surgery 2021, 'Feasibility and diagnostic accuracy of Telephone Administration of an adapted wound heaLing QuestiONnaire for assessment for surgical site infection following abdominal surgery in low and middle-income countries (TALON): protocol for a study within a trial (SWAT)', Trials, vol. 22, no. 1, 471. https://doi.org/10.1186/s13063-021-05398-z

Price, K, Moiemen, N, Nice, L & Mathers, J 2021, 'Patient experience of scar assessment and the use of scar assessment tools during burns rehabilitation: a qualitative study', Burns & Trauma, vol. 9, tkab005. https://doi.org/10.1093/burnst/tkab005

Retzer, A, Sayers, R, Pinfold, V, Gibson, J, Keeley, T, Taylor, G, Plappert, M, Gibbons, B, Huxley, P, Mathers, J, Birchwood, M & Calvert, M 2020, 'Development of a core outcome set for use in community-based bipolar trials - a qualitative study and modified Delphi', PLOS One, vol. 15, no. 10, e0240518. https://doi.org/10.1371/journal.pone.0240518

Mathers, J, Moiemen, N, Bamford, A, Gardiner, F & Tarver, J 2020, 'Ensuring that the outcome domains proposed for use in burns research are relevant to adult burn patients: a systematic review of qualitative research evidence.', Burns & Trauma, vol. 8, tkaa030. https://doi.org/10.1093/burnst/tkaa030


Mathers, J, Poyner, C, Thompson, D, Rudge, G & Pritchett, R 2021, 'An exploration of the uptake of asymptomatic COVID-19 lateral flow testing in Birmingham, UK: cross-sectional survey and qualitative analysis', The Lancet, vol. 398, no. Supplement 2, S73. https://doi.org/10.1016/S0140-6736(21)02616-7

Review article

Thompson, D, Booth, L, Moore, D & Mathers, J 2022, 'Peer support for people with chronic conditions: a systematic review of reviews', BMC Health Services Research, vol. 22, no. 1, 427 . https://doi.org/10.1186/s12913-022-07816-7

View all publications in research portal