Carolyn is a Reader in Integrated Care at the University of South Wales and Senior Clinical Research Fellow at PRIME Centre Wales where she leads on the social care cross cutting theme for the centre and provides support for the long term conditions theme. PRIME Centre Wales is a virtual centre in partnership between the Universities of Cardiff, Bangor, Glyndŵr, Swansea and University of South Wales, funded by Health and Care Research Wales. It is a multi-disciplinary collaboration of primary and emergency care disciplines.
Brought up in rural Monmouthshire, Carolyn is bilingual having learned Welsh at the hearth and attended welsh medium education. Carolyn came late to higher education having started her nurse training in 1981, she completed a social science Open University degree in 1996. She went on to study an MSc ‘Interprofessional Studies’ at UWIC in 1998 and later a PhD ‘An exploration of health and social care service integration in a deprived South Wales area’ at Coventry University in 2010.
Carolyn’s first job as a staff nurse was at the University Hospital of Wales, she later worked at Nevill Hall NHS Trust and Swindon Health Authority where she became a ward sister in 1987 caring for older people. Whilst taking time out of full time work (1994-99) to have her family, Carolyn worked as the practitioner/manager of a travelling community day hospital. A nurse led team eventually based in the third sector ‘Bridges’ organisation consisted of Nurses, physiotherapy, OT, visiting social work, GPs and elderly care consultant. Returning to full time work Carolyn worked as a Business Support Manager for allied health professionals in Gwent NHS Trust and Development Officer with the Blaenau Gwent Commissioning Group developing the new model of integrated day services which she set up and managed for the Blaenau Gwent Health Board until 2004. Today Carolyn has a unique understanding of health and social care services, having worked as a nurse, a manager in the NHS, developing and researching integrated care services and in recent years as a trustee and chair of Age Cymru Gwent.
At the University of South Wales Carolyn has developed awards such as the BSc (Hons)Health and Social Care Management, Step up to Management programme and MSc Integrated Care. Carolyn’s methods expertise lies in applied mixed methods, qualitative methodologies, Realist and Participatory evaluation, and consensus methods. Her research focus has a health and care services focus which today includes founding and co-chairing the Wales Social Prescribing Research Network with the WCVA (Wales Council for Voluntary Action) to build the critical evidence for social prescribing in Wales and leading the FRAIT (Family Resilience Assessment Instrument and Tool).