Staff Profile of Dr Nefyn Howard Williams

Dr Nefyn Howard Williams
Senior Clinical Lecturer
01248 383507

Research Overview

Nefyn is a Clinical Senior Lecturer in with Bangor University, based at the North Wales Centre for Primary Care Research in Wrexham. Nefyn also holds positions as the Associate Director of North Wales Organisation for Randomised Trials in Health (NWORTH), the Director of Research and Development for BCUHB, Primary Care and Part-time GP Principal Plas Menai, Llanfairfechan.

In the last five years Nefyn has won in excess of £3M of external grant incomer, £2M as chief investigator. The main themes of my research are the management of musculoskeletal problems in primary and intermediate care, the rehabilitation of chronic disease such as osteoarthritis and cancer, and the promotion of physical activity. Nefyn’s practice in Plas Menai, Llanfairfechan was the only practice in north Wales to win primary care research infrastructure support from NISCHR AHSC in 2013.Nefyn also chairs the North Wales research grants committee and is on the steering committee of the Musculoskeletal Pain Clinical Studies Group for Arthritis Research UK.

Current position held at Bangor University:

2011- Present: Clinical Senior Lecturer in General Practice, Bangor University

2011 -Present: Associate Director of North Wales Organisation for Randomised Trials in Health (NWORTH)

Other external positions currently held:

2014 -Present: Director of Research and Development Betsi Cadwaladr University Health Board, Director of Primary Care

1990 -Present: Part-time GP Principal Plas Menai, Llanfairfechan

Educational Background:

1982 MA (Hons) Physiological Science, Jesus College, Oxford University

1985 BM BCh Clinical Medicine, Jesus College, Oxford University

1987 Diploma of Royal College of Obstetrics & Gynaecology

1988 Diploma of Child Health

1991 Membership of Royal College of General Practitioners

1996 Diploma of Musculoskeletal Medicine

2005 PhD Cardiff University, Wales College of Medicine

2005 Fellowship of London College of Osteopathic Medicine

2008:Fellowship of the Royal College of General Practitioners


Research Interests:

Musculoskeletal problems such as spinal pain, sciatica and osteoarthritis of the hip and knee

Promotion of exercise and physical activity 

Psychological effects of treatment

Pragmatic randomised controlled trials (RCTs)

Systematic reviews, meta- analysis, and mixed treatment comparison (MTC)

Outcome measure development

Qualitative research

Health economics evaluation alongside RCTs and systematic reviews

Selected Grants

2014: HTA. Williams N, Wilkinson C, Hay E, Whitaker R, Hughes DA, Isaacs J, Walsh D, Foster N, Sparkes V, Siebert S, Carnes D, McCarthy J, Morrissey D, Dardis R, Genevay S, Karppinen J. Arondomised control trial of adalimumab injection compared with placebo injection for patients receiving physiotherapy treatment for sciatica. Sub-cutaneous injection of Adalimumab trial compared with control (SCIATIC). (£1.2M)

2013: NISCHR AHSC Primary Care Research Infrastructure Support (PiCRIS). Williams N, Westmoreland J, Lomax L. (£8K)

2013:HTA. Whitaker Rh, Hendry M, Booth A, Carter B, Crane N, Edwards RhT, Noyes J, Rycroft-Malone J, Williams N. Intervention Now to Eliminate Repeat Unintended Pregnancies in Teenagers (INTERUPT). (£196K)

2012: HTA. Williams N (PI), Wilkinson C, Lemmey AB, Rycroft-Malone J,Sackley C, Woods RT, Morrison VL, Whitaker CJ, Edwards RT, Andrew G, Okoro T, Logan PA, Alexander S. Developing a multidisciplinary rehabilitation package following hip fracture. Fracture in the Elderly Multidisciplinary Rehabilitation (FEMuR). (£533K)

2011: BCUHB research grant. Edwards RhT, Nafees S, Williams N, Wilkinson C. Evaluation of a physical activity booklet for cancer survivors. (£17K)

2011: Welsh School of Primary Care. Din NU, Williams N. Activity Increase Despite Arthritis (AÏDA). Development of research proposal for a definitive phase III RCT. (£10K).

2010: Cardiff University Clinical Epidemiology IRG PhD studentship. Williams N (PI), Wilkinson C. Physical activity booklet for cancer survivors: evidence based development and evaluation in a randomised controlled trial. (£26K)

2009: MRC/NPRI Simpson S, Newcombe R, Owen-Jones E, Playle R, Williams N, Busse M. Healthy Eating and Lifestyle in Pregnancy (HELP). (£1.041M)

Key Publications

For a full list of publications follow this link to PURE

Rabeea’h W. Aslam, Maggie Hendry, Andrew Booth, Ben Carter, Joanna M. Charles, Noel Craine, Rhiannon Tudor Edwards, Jane Noyes, Lupetu Ives Ntambwe, Diana Pasterfield, Jo Rycroft-Malone, Nefyn Williams and Rhiannon Whitaker. Intervention Now to Eliminate Repeat Unintended Pregnancy in Teenagers (INTERUPT): a systematic review of intervention effectiveness and cost effectiveness, and qualitative and realist synthesis of implementation factors and user engagement. BMC Medicine (2017) 15:155 DOI 10.1186/s12916-017-0904-

Squires LA, Williams NH, Morrison VL. Matching and accepting assistive technology in multiple sclerosis: A focus group study with people with multiple sclerosis, carers and occupational therapists. Journal of health psychology (2016), 1-15. DOI:10.1177/1359105316677293

Williams NH, Roberts JL, Din NU, Totton N, Charles JM, Hawkes CA, Morrison V, Hoare Z, Williams M, Pritchard AW, Alexander S, Lemmey A, Woods RT, Sackley C, Logan P, Edwards RT, and Wilkinson C. Fracture in the Elderly Multidisciplinary Rehabilitation (FEMuR): a phase II randomised feasibility study of a multidisciplinary rehabilitation package following hip fracture. BMJ Open 2016;6: e012422. doi:10.1136/ bmjopen-2016-012422

Williams, N.H. and Hawkes, C. and Din, N.U. and Roberts, J.L. and Charles, J.M. and Morrison, V.L. and Hoare, Z. and Edwards, R.T. and Andrew, G. and Alexander, S. and Lemmey, A.B. and Woods, B. and Sackley, C. and Logan, P. and Hunnisett, D. and Mawdesley, K. and Wilkinson, C. (2015) Fracture in the Elderly Multidisciplinary Rehabilitation (FEMuR): study protocol for a phase II randomised feasibility study of a multidisciplinary rehabilitation package following hip fracture [ ISRCTN22464643 ]. Pilot and Feasibility Studies, 1 (13). DOI: 10.1186/s40814-015-0008-0

Neal, R.D. and Tharmanathan, P. and France, B. and Din, N.U. and Cotton, S. and Fallon-Ferguson, J. and Hamilton, W. and Hendry, A. and Lewis, R. and Macleod, U. and Mitchell, E.D. and Pickett, M. and Rai, T. and Shaw, K. and Stuart, N. and Torring, M.L. and Wilkinson, C. and Williams, B. and Williams, N. and Emery, J. (2015) Is increased time to diagnosis and treatment in symptomatic cancer associated with poorer outcomes? Systematic review. British Journal of Cancer Supplement. (In Press)

Fitzimmons, D. and Phillips, C.J. and Bennett, H. and Jones, M. and Williams, N. and Lewis, R. and Sutton, A. and Matar, H.E. and Din, N. and Burton, K. and Nafees, S. and Hendry, M. and Rickard, I. and Wilkinson, C. (2014) Cost-effectiveness of different strategies to manage patients with sciatica. Pain, 155 (7). pp. 1318-1327. DOI: 10.1016/j.pain.2014.04.008

Bedson, E. and Bell, D. and Carr, D. and Carter, B. and Hughes, D.A. and Jorgensen, A. and Lewis, H. and Lloyd, K. and McCaddon, A. and Moat, S. and Pink, J. and Pirmohamed, M. and Roberts, S. and Russell, I. and Sylvestre, Y. and Tranter, R. and Whitaker, R. and Wilkinson, C. and Williams, N. (2014) Folate Augmentation of Treatment--Evaluation for Depression (FolATED): randomised trial and economic evaluation. Health Technology Assessment, 18 (48). DOI: 10.3310/hta18480

John, E. and Cassidy, D.M. and Playle, R. and Jewell, K. and Cohen, D. and Duncan, D. and Newcombe, R.G. and Busse, M. and Owen-Jones, E. and Williams, N. and Longo, M. and Avery, A. and Simpson, S.A. (2014) Healthy eating and lifestyle in pregnancy (HELP): a protocol for a cluster randomised trial to evaluate the effectiveness of a weight management intervention in pregnancy. BMC Public Health, 14 (439). DOI: 10.1186/1471-2458-14-439 (In Press)

Whitaker, R. and Hendry, M. and Booth, A. and Carter, B. and Charles, J. and Craine, N. and Edwards, R.T. and Lyons, M. and Noyes, J. and Pasterfield, D. and Rycroft-Malone, J. and Williams, N. (2014) Intervention Now To Eliminate Repeat Unintended Pregnancy in Teenagers (INTERUPT): a systematic review of intervention effectiveness and cost-effectiveness, qualitative and realist synthesis of implementation factors and user engagement. BMJ Open, 4 (4). DOI: 10.1136/bmjopen-2013-004733

Neal, R.D. and Nafees, S. and Pasterfield, D. and Hood, K. and Hendry. M., and Gollins, S. and Makin, M. and Stuart, N. and Turner, J. and Carter, B. and Wilkinson, C. and Williams, N. and Robling, M. (2014) Patient-reported measurement of time to diagnosis in cancer: development of the Cancer Symptom Interval Measure (C-SIM) and randomised controlled trial of method of delivery. BMC health services research. DOI: 10.1186/1472-6963-14-3

Murphy, S. and Raisanen, L. and Moore, G. and Edwards, R.T. and Linck, P. and Williams, N. and Din, N.U. and Hale, J. and Roberts, C. and McNaish, E. and Moore, L. (2010) A pragmatic randomised controlled trial of the Welsh National Exercise Referral Scheme: protocol for trial and integrated economic and process evaluation. BMC Public Health, 10. p. 352. DOI: 10.1186/1471-2458-10-352

Din, N.U. and Moore, G.F. and Murphy, S. and Wilkinson, C. and Williams, N.H. (2014) Health professionals’ perspectives on exercise referral and physical activity promotion in primary care: Findings from a process evaluation of the National Exercise Referral Scheme in Wales. Health Education Journal. DOI: 10.1177/0017896914559785 (In Press)


PhD Supervision, PGT & UG teaching:

Nefyn's main teaching/education role has been contributing to the management and teaching commitments of the North Wales Clinical School and now to the BMedSci degree course in Bangor University. Nefyn has designed and run a special studies module (SSM) in a musculoskeletal medicine for final year medical undergraduates at Cardiff University, in conjunction with colleagues in Ysbyty Gwynedd, Bangor.