Dr Jo Ellins

Dr Jo Ellins

Health Services Management Centre
Senior Fellow

Contact details

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

Dr Jo Ellins is a Senior Fellow at the Health Services Management Centre and Deputy Director of the BRACE Rapid Evaluation Centre. She has over 15 years’ experience of leading applied health services research and evaluation for organisations across the public and charitable sectors. Jo’s main interests are around patients’ experiences and person-centred care, alongside which she has worked extensively on issues relating to whole system redesign, integrated care, cancer policy and services, and management of long-term conditions. She has particular expertise in theory-based evaluation and in designing and conducting research in collaboration with people who use health services and the wider public, including the use of participatory and narrative methodologies. Prior to HSMC, Jo worked at the Picker Institute, NHS Centre for Involvement and the research consultancy ICF. 


  • D.Phil Sociology, University of Sussex, 2005
  • MA Social and Political Thought (Distinction), University of Sussex, 2000
  • BA Social and Political Sciences, University of Cambridge, 1997


Jo worked at HSMC between 2007 and 2013 as a lecturer, and re-joined the Centre in January 2017 as a Senior Fellow. Before and in between her time at HSMC, she was a Senior Managing Consultant at the research consultancy ICF, where she was part of a team specialising in health services evaluation. She was also an organisational development manager at the NHS Centre for Involvement, and a research associate at the Picker Institute where she lead a programme of work on redesigning support for people with long-term conditions.

Jo’s D.Phil explored factors responsible for the explosion in prescribing of three high profile pharmaceutical drugs: Prozac, Ritalin and Viagra, using her analysis to critically examine the value and limitations of sociological theories of ‘medicalisation’.

Postgraduate supervision

Jo would welcome PhD students interested in the following topics:

  • People’s experiences of using health services and use of patient voices in driving improvement
  • Patient involvement and models of person-centred care
  • The organisation and delivery of care for people with long-term conditions
  • Cancer policy and services
  • Service and system redesign
  • New models of primary care


Current and recent projects include:

  • Evaluation of the Children and Young People’s Mental Health Trailblazer programme, in collaboration with the Policy Innovation and Evaluation Research Unit [embed link – see below]
  • Evaluations of the Dudley and Connected Care multi-speciality community provider vanguards in NHS England’s New Care Models programme
  • Evaluation of ‘My Health My Way’ – a service supporting people to live well with and self-manage long term health problems
  • A project exploring how to broker constructive conversations with the public about major service change (Social Care Institute for Excellence)
  • Evaluation of the House of Care model of care and support planning for people with CVD (British Heart Foundation) 

PIRU link https://piru.lshtm.ac.uk/

Other activities

Jo has been a member of INVOLVE (www.invo.org.uk) since 2012.


Ellins, J. and Brown, H. (2018) Evaluation of the Connected Care Partnership Vanguard. Final Report. Birmingham: Health Services Management Centre.

Ellins, J. and Glasby, J. (2016) ‘“You don’t know what you are saying ‘Yes’ and what you are saying ‘No’ to”: hospital experiences of older people from minority ethnic communities’, Ageing and Society, 36(1):42-63. DOI: 10.1017/S0144686X14000919

Ahmad, N., Ellins, J., Krelle, H. and Lawrie, M. (2014) Person-centred care: from ideas to action. London: The Health Foundation.

Brown, H., Ellins, J., Kearney, J. et al (2014) Measuring up? The health of NHS cancer services. London: Cancer Research UK.

Ellins, J., Glasby, J., Tanner, D. et al (2012), Understanding and improving transitions of older people: a user and carer centred approach. London: NHS SDO.

Ellins, J. (2012) ‘Patient and public involvement in commissioning’ in Glasby, J. (ed) Commissioning for Health and Wellbeing, Cambridge: Policy Press.

Ellins, J. (2011) ‘Great expectations? The future of patient and public involvement in the NHS’, Clinical Medicine, 11(6):544-547.

Ellins, J. and Glasby, J. (2011) ‘Together we’re better? Strategic needs assessment as a tool to improve joint working in England’, Journal of Integrated Care, 19(3):34-41.

Ellins, J. and Ham, C. (2009) NHS Mutual: engaging staff and aligning incentives to achieve higher levels of performance. London: Nuffield Trust.

Ellins, J. and Coulter, A. (2009) ‘The patient’s role in preventing errors and promoting safety’ in Hurwitz, B. and Sheikh, A. (eds) Health care errors and patient safety, Oxford: BMJ Books.

Ellins, J., Ham, C. and Parker, H. (2009) ‘Opening up the primary medical care market’, British Medical Journal, 338: 798-800.

Coulter, A. and Ellins, J. (2008) ‘Changing attitudes to the role of patients in healthcare’ in Newman, S., Steed, L. and Mulligan, K. (eds) Chronic physical illness: Self management and behavioural interventions, Maidenhead: Open University Press.

Coulter, A. and Ellins, J. (2007) ‘The effectiveness of strategies for informing, educating and involving patients: an overview of systematic reviews’, British Medical Journal, 335 (7609): 24-7.

View all publications in research portal