Professor Catherine Meads

Professor of Health

Faculty:Faculty of Health, Education, Medicine and Social Care

School:Nursing and Midwifery

Location: Cambridge

Areas of Expertise: Health Technology Assessment

Research Supervision:Yes

Catherine is a senior systematic reviewer and has published numerous systematic reviews and health technology assessments, including music for recuperation after surgery, therapeutic writing in long-term conditions, and in sexual orientation and health.


Previously, Catherine was Research Leader at RAND Europe in Cambridge, Reader in Health Technology Assessment at Brunel University, Senior Lecturer at Bart’s and The London School of Medicine and Dentistry and University of Birmingham.

Research interests

  • Leading and managing systematic reviews and health technology assessments
  • Systematic reviews in complex interventions
  • Systematic reviews of devices and diagnostics
  • Systematic reviews of prognosis, causality and health service delivery
  • Health technology assessments incorporating a variety of systematic reviews with economic evaluations
  • Sexual orientation and health

Catherine has been conducting research into lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) health since 1992, an area of profound health issues but little research or use of evidence to drive public health policy. Her work includes several publications, lectures to undergraduate medical students, an elearning package for GPs and being on conference steering committees. One systematic review was used to obtain funding for a LGBT health centre in Birmingham. Recently she completed a best evidence review for Public Health England on healthcare experiences and health of UK sexual minority women.

Areas of research supervision

  • Systematic reviews and health technology assessment
  • Sexual orientation and health

Catherine has supervised 2 PhD theses, 1 MD thesis and 8 MSc dissertations to completion. She has also facilitated students to publish their work in high-impact journals. She would welcome new research students with appropriate topics to her research interests. Past student topics include:

  • Saudi women’s sexual and health information needs (PhD)
  • Prediction and prevention of foetal growth restriction. Systematic reviews and meta-analyses with model-based economic evaluation (PhD)
  • Systematic review of effectiveness of acupuncture for female infertility (MSc)
  • Systematic review of hyperbaric oxygen therapy for neonatal hypoxic ischaemic encephalopathy (MSc)


Catherine has taught systematic review, meta-analysis and critical appraisal skills across a range of courses including MSc, undergraduate levels and for continuing professional development in the UK and abroad. She was previously Director of the MSc in Evidence Based Healthcare and Health Technology Assessment at the University of Birmingham. She has no current teaching responsibilities and focuses mainly on research and research supervision.


  • Medical Degree in 1983 (University of Leicester Medical School)
  • Masters’ Degree in Information Technology for Management in 1994 (Coventry University)
  • PhD in Psychology in 2006 (Thesis on emotional disclosure in health) (University of Birmingham)
  • Masters’ Degree in Public Health in 2010 (University of Birmingham)

Research grants, consultancy, knowledge exchange

Current grants in 2016 include:

  • Association between sexual orientation and health equity in women: systematic review and evidence mapping, for Public Health England
  • Infrastructure Sector Evidence Gap Mapping, for the World Bank
  • Systematic review and evidence of middle- and high-income countries’ community-based social innovations for healthy ageing, for the World Health Organisation
  • What Works for Wellbeing in Culture and Sport, for ESRC
  • Smoking Toolkit Study, sexual orientation data, for Cancer Research UK

Selected recent publications

Miani C, Martin A, Exley J, Doble B, Wilson E, Payne R, Avery A, Meads C, Kirtley A, Morgan Jones M, King S. Clinical and cost effectiveness of issuing longer versus shorter duration (3 month vs. 28 day) prescriptions in patients with chronic conditions. Systematic review and economic modelling. Health Technology Assessment 2017 (In press)

Daykin, N., Mansfield, L., Kay, T., Meads, C., D’Innocenzo G, Burnett A, Dolan, P., Julier, G., Longworth, L., Payne, A., Tomlinson, A., Victor, C. What Works for Wellbeing in Culture and Sport? Report of a Delphi process to establish principles and parameters of an evidence review. Journal of the Royal Society of Public Health entitled 'Perspectives in Public Health' 2016 DOI: 10.1177/1757913916674038

Hodson K, Meads C, Bewley S. Lesbian and bisexual women’s likelihood of becoming pregnant: a systematic review. BJOG 2016 DOI:10.1111/1471-0528.14449

Robinson C, Galloway KY, Bewley S, Meads C. Lesbian and Bisexual Women’s Gynaecological Conditions: A Systematic Review. BJOG 2016 DOI: 10.1111/1471-0528.14414

Nyssen OP, Taylor SJC, Wong G, Steed L, Bourke L, Lord J, Ross CA, Hayman S, Field V, Higgins A, Greenhalgh T, Meads C. Does therapeutic writing help people with long-term conditions? Systematic review, realist synthesis and economic considerations. Health Technology Assessment 2016;20(27)

Yilmaz FM, Kahveci R, Aksoy A, Kucuk E, Akin T, Mathew J, Meads C, Zengin N. Strategies to reduce healthcare costs through appropriate use of laboratory tests: collaboration between the hospital-based HTA unit and the laboratory. Plos One 2016;11(4): e0153693

Meads C, Glover M, Pokhrel S. Parafricta Bootees and Undergarments to reduce skin breakdown in people with or at risk of pressure ulcers: A NICE Medical Technology Guidance. Applied Health Economics and Health Policy 2016;14(6):635-646. DOI 10.1007/s40258-016-0245-2

Catley MJ, Gibson W, Wand BM, Meads C, O’Connel NE. Transcutaneous Electrical Nerve Stimulation (TENS) for chronic pain - an overview of Cochrane reviews. Protocol. 2015 DOI: 10.1002/14651858.CD011890

Whaley P, Halsall C, Ågerstrand M, Aiassa E, Benford D, Bilotta G, Coggon D, Collins C, Dempsey C, Duarte-Davidson R, FitzGerald R, Galay-Burgos M, Gee D, Hoffmann S, Lam J, Lasserson T, Levy L, Lipworth S, Mackenzie Ross S, Martin O, Meads C, Meyer-Baron M, Miller J, Pease C, Rooney A, Sapiets A, Stewart G, Taylor D. Implementing systematic review techniques in chemical risk assessment: Challenges, opportunities and recommendations. Environment International. December 2015 doi:10.1016/j.envint.2015.11.002

Lord J, Longworth L, Singh J, Onyimadu O, Fricke J, Bayliss S, Meads C. Oral Health Guidance – Economic analysis of oral health promotion approaches for dental teams. Birmingham and Brunel Consortium EAC report to NICE Centre for Public Health Excellence. London 2015

View a full list of Catherine's publications to date

Recent presentations and conferences

Meads C, Hodson K, Robinson C, Galloway KY, Bewley C. Lesbian and bisexual women’s likelihood of becoming pregnant and Lesbian and bisexual women’s' gynaecological disorders: a systematic review. Presentation. Evidence Live. University of Oxford. 22-24th June 2016O’Connell N, Mansfield L, Meads C, Kay T, Fox-Rushby J, Kanya L, Grigsby-Duffy L. Lifestyle behaviours and people living with and beyond cancer: Evidence from systematic overviews of reviews. Poster. PHE Cancer Data and Outcomes Conference 2016. Manchester, 13-14th June 2016

Constable M, McManus J, Jenkinson E, Meads C. A systematic review of self-management interventions to improve coping and resilience in common long term conditions. Poster. HTAi Annual Meeting 2016, Tokyo Japan 10-14th May 2016

Meads C. The health of sexual minority women. Equality and Diversity Conference, Brunel University, Uxbridge. 20th April 2016

Shabib L, Brown J, West R, Meads C. Gender differences in the association of sexual orientation with smoking status and smoking characteristics: findings from a representative population survey. Society for Research on nicotine and Tobacco (SRNT) 16th Annual conference, Chicago USA, 2-5th March 2016

Meads C. Music for recuperation after surgery. London Cancer Alliance quarterly meeting. Broadway House London, 20th November 2015

Meads C. Lesbian Health. GLADD annual conference. London 14th November 2015

Meads C, Nyssen OP, Wong G, Higgins A, Steed L, Bourke L, Ross CA, Hayman S, Field V, Lord J, Greenhalgh T, Taylor SJC. Does therapeutic writing help people with long term conditions? Systematic review, realist synthesis and economic considerations. Poster. Brunel University Postgraduate Research Conference. Brunel, Uxbridge. 29th October 2015

Hole J, Hirsch M, Ball E, Meads C. Music as an aid for postoperative recovery: a meta-analysis. Poster. Brunel University Postgraduate Research Conference. 29th October 2015

Longworth L, Glover M, Meads C. HERG. Brunel Research Institutes Inaugural Annual Conference. Brunel University 6th October 2015

Adebibe M, Khera B, Perera A, Knowles C, Meads C. A systematic review of the causal links between irritable bowel syndrome and psychopathology. Poster. Oslo, Norway. HTAi 13-17th June 2015