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Personal profile

Research interests


Alyson joined the Centre of Academic Primary Care (CAPC) in March 2009. Her research on health services research focuses on services at the primary health care and secondary health care interface and cancer survivorship as well as complementary approaches to health care.


Hospital admissions

There is considerable pressure to reduce hospital admissions amongst older people. Alyson’s work has looked at primary and community health care interventions that help prevent unnecessary hospital admissions, factors of primary care affecting hospital admissions and admission alternatives for the aging population.

Post discharge & community care

Two projects have focused on heart failure: case management in the community and a James Lind Alliance priority setting partnership for patients with advanced heart failure in the community (JLA-AHF). Through Elizabeth Blackwell challenge funding she has initiated research into a patient-friendly discharge summary (PODS) for older patients.

Hospital referrals

Alyson is co-applicant on a RfPB-funded project PLANET (PI Marcus Drake) looking at non-urological causes of nocturia with the aim of improving referrals.

Supportive care for cancer patients  

Cancer survivorship has been high on the Government’s agenda for the past decade. Alyson’s cancer research includes an RfPB mixed methods project (ESOPS) looking at supportive care for men with prostate cancer, and the pilot RCT of Mistletoe And Breast cancer (MAB).



Alyson is a graduate the University of Bath and was awarded her PhD from the Institute of Child Health (UCL) in 1996.  She has held previous appointments at the University of Leicester (1996-1999) and the University of Exeter (1999-2006).  She has contributed to several NICE guidance whilst working at the National Collaborating Centre for Women’s and children’s Health (2006-2009). She has also worked in health care consultancy.



Evidence synthesis

Alyson has extensive experience of systematic review and evidence synthesis methodology. She has a special interest in mixed methods synthesis reviews and has published an exemplar paper of synthesis of quantitative and qualitative data. [Huntley 2016]

  • Meta-analysis
  • Thematic synthesis
  • Mixed methods synthesis (sequential & integrated)
  • Rapid reviews
  • Overviews (umbrella reviews)

Patient involvement and health professional consultation

  • Patient and public involvement (PPI) and health professional consultation has been a part of Alyson’s evidence synthesis projects since 2011. 
  • Alyson completed a JLA priority setting partnership (PIs Rachel Johnson (Bristol), Clare Taylor (Oxford) for patients with advanced heart failure JLA-AHF in 2019 involving both patients and those who care for people with heart failure.
  • Both the MAB and the PODS studies have PPI groups in their development and conduct.

Clinical trials

  • Alyson has co-designed and leads the Mistletoe And Breast cancer (MAB) pilot RCT.




Student Selective Course (SSC) in complementary and alternative medicine Year 2 medicine 

Library SSC projects Year 2 medicine.


Other research activities

Member of National School of Primary care systematic review group

Alyson facilitates a lunch time interest group called the Complementary and Integrative Medicine Group within Canynge hall. This brings together interested parties from both within the SSCM, the University of the West England and Bristol based interested parties. e.g. Penny Brohn Cancer Care centre


Key words


Hospital admissions and discharge/community care 

Supportive care for cancer

Complementary approches to health 

Systematic review and evidence synthesis methodology


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Research Output

  • 22 Article (Academic Journal)
  • 4 Review article (Academic Journal)
  • 1 Conference Poster
  • 1 Editorial (Academic Journal)

Adverse events from emollient use in eczema: a restricted review of published data

Bhanot, A., Huntley, A. & Ridd, M., 1 Jun 2019, In : Dermatology and Therapy. 9, 2, p. 193-208 16 p.

Research output: Contribution to journalReview article (Academic Journal)

Open Access
  • 1 Citation (Scopus)
    251 Downloads (Pure)

    Determining when a hospital admission of an older person can be avoided in a subacute setting: a systematic review and concept analysis

    Huntley, A. L., Davies, B. R., Jones, N., Rooney, J., Goyder, P., Purdy, S. & Baxter, H., 5 Dec 2019, In : Journal of Health Services Research and Policy. 13 p.

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticle (Academic Journal)

    Open Access
  • 56 Downloads (Pure)

    Enablers and barriers to treatment adherence in heterozygous familial hypercholesterolaemia: a qualitative evidence synthesis

    Kinnear, F. J., Wainwright, E., Perry, R., Lithander, F. E., Bayly, G., Huntley, A., Cox, J., Shield, J. PH. & Searle, A., 31 Jul 2019, In : BMJ Open. 9, 18 p., e030290.

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticle (Academic Journal)

    Open Access
  • 5 Citations (Scopus)
    133 Downloads (Pure)