Associate Research Fellow
Tom graduated in Sports Science, Physical Education and English from Loughborough University in 2004, following which he spent several years working in disadvantaged communities, primarily engaging with ‘hard to reach’ 16-19 year olds across informal education and skill development programmes.
He returned to study for his MSc in Sport and Health Sciences at Exeter in 2008, and in March 2009 was appointed as the ‘Physical Activity Facilitator’ for the TREAD (TRial of Exercise And Depression) project. The role focused on implementing behaviour change strategies with those suffering from mild to moderate depression with the aim of becoming more physically active. The role came an end in August 2010. The results from the trial are now in the writing up phase.
Following his role as a ‘PAF’ he was appointed as the Trial Manager for an exploratory pilot randomized control trial – EARS: Exercise Assisted Reduction then Stop. The trial, a complex behavioural intervention based within areas of high social deprivation within Plymouth, aims to explore the acceptability of a smoking reduction intervention among ‘hard to reach’ smokers. With an emphasis on increasing physical activity to achieve sustainable reduction, it is targeting those smokers who do not want to quit, but would like to cut down. Only around 5% of smokers engage with NHS Stop Smoking Services offering support for an abrupt quit attempt. Pilot work has revealed as many as 70% of smokers in the target areas would like to cut down but not quit. The NHS Stop Smoking Services do not currently engage with those who only want to cut down on their smoking, and as such the trial hopes to increase the ‘reach’ of smoking services and the number of people entering the Stop Smoking Services. Data has revealed those who cut down are more likely to then want to quit, so those in the study who do express a desire to with will then be referred to the Stop Smoking Services. As the manager Tom is responsible for the overseeing the day to day running of the trial. Results from the trial are expected in 2012.
The current role allows Tom to advance his increasing and imbedded interest in health inequality and the challenges of social deprivation. He is currently completing his PhD alongside the role, being supervised by Professor Adrian Taylor.
|Tel||+44 (0) 771 7690833|
|Building||ITTC Building, Plymouth|
|Address||Exercise Assisted Reduction then Stop Smoking (EARS)
Peninsula College of Medicine and Dentistry