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Brighton & Sussex Medical School


Naji Tabet

Director, Centre of Dementia Studies
Dr Naji Tabet (BSc, MSc, MD(Lon), FRCPsych) 

Dr Naji Tabet, Reader in Old Age Psychiatry, is a course leader of the MSc Dementia Studies, and leads the clinical trial arm of CDS. Dr Tabet has been an investigator on over 20 major clinical trials and is also actively investigating non-pharmacological approaches that may have an added benefit for Alzheimer’s disease patients. He is also studying biochemical and immunological markers to shed further light on disease pathogenesis and progression. 

Sube Banerjee 2019

Honorary Visiting Professor
Professor Sube Banerjee

Sube Banerjee MBE, MB BS MSc MBA MD FRCPsych is Honorary Visiting Professor and he is Executive Dean of Health: Medicine, Dentistry and Human Sciences at Plymouth University. He trained at St Thomas’s, Guy’s and the Maudsley hospitals, and was the Professor of Mental Health and Ageing at the Institute of Psychiatry, King’s College London, for 10 years. He was the Department of Health for England’s senior professional advisor on dementia and led the development of its National Dementia Strategy, as well as conducting the national enquiry into the use of antipsychotics in dementia for the UK government. He developed the Croydon Memory Service Model and works with industry and governments on health systems, policy and strategies to improve health for older adults with complex needs and those in long-term care with dementia.

An active researcher with more than 120 original papers published in peer-reviewed journals, Professor Banerjee focuses on measurement of quality of life in dementia, evaluation of new treatments and services, and the interface between policy, research and practice. He has been awarded national and international awards for his work in policy and research.

Stephanie Daley March 2015_web

Clinical Research Fellow
Dr Stephanie Daley

Dr Stephanie Daley is the evaluation lead for the Time for Dementia programme. Stephanie undertook her PhD at the Institute of Psychiatry, Kings College London on the applicability of the concept and practice of recovery for older people with mental health problems, including dementia. Stephanie has over 20 years experience as an Occupational Therapist, most recently as the Professional Lead for Occupational Therapy for the Mental Health of Older Adults and Dementia CAG at the South London & Maudsley NHS Trust. Stephanie has also worked as an Organisational Consultant, and has run the Leadership and Change module for the Advanced Care of Dementia at the Institute of Psychiatry, Kings College London since 2011. • 01273 873206

Nick Farina 20

Research Fellow (B)
Dr Nicolas Farina

Dr Nicolas Farina is a Research Fellow for the Centre for Dementia Studies. He has a PhD in Psychology from the University of Sussex, in which he explored the effects of physical activity on the executive decline of people with dementia. Dr Farina is particularly interested in the role of physical activity in improving the quality of life of people with dementia and their carers. He is also interested in improving people’s attitudes and knowledge about the condition. He has experience working with a community-based dementia population and writing systematic reviews on a number of topics. He is also the local project supervisor for the MODEM study ( • 01273 678995

Research Fellow 
Dr Ben Hicks

Dr Ben Hicks is a Research Fellow at the Centre for Dementia Studies and the study co-ordinator for the DETERMIND project. He has a PhD from Bournemouth University, where he also previously worked as a Psychology Lecturer and Associate Director of the Ageing and Dementia Research Centre. Ben’s PhD was concerned with supporting the social inclusion and well-being of rural-dwelling older men with dementia. He has a particular interest in exploring how creative initiatives can be used as a means to appeal to people with dementia and enhance their sense of inclusion. These include graffiti art, commercial gaming technology (Nintendo Wii, Microsoft Kinect and iPads) as well as dance and drama. Ben has experience working with people with dementia and their care partners living within the community as well as in care homes.

Laura Hughes 2020

Research Fellow
Dr Laura Hughes

Dr Laura Hughes is a Research Fellow at the Centre for Dementia Studies. She has a PhD from Brighton and Sussex Medical School which explored the implementation of routine quality of life measurement in care homes. Laura’s research interests include measuring, improving, and maintaining quality of life and quality of care in care homes. She has an interest in working closely and collaboratively with care home staff during research to enhance pragmatic use of research findings. More broadly Laura is interested in many aspects of older adult health and social care such as care staff experiences of caring and public attitudes toward dementia and dementia care.  Laura worked in the social care sector for over eight years and has extensive research and occupational experience working with people living in care homes, their families, and care home staff. • 01273 872691

Gosia Raczek

Module Leader of MSc Dementia Studies
Dr Malgorzata (Gosia) Raczek 

Dr Gosia Raczek is an Honorary Senior Lecturer at BSMS and a module leader for the MSc in Dementia Studies. She is also a clinical academic consultant in Old Age Psychiatry in Sussex Partnership NHS Foundation Trust, where she works in Memory Assessment Service in North West Sussex and Dementia Research Unit in Crowborough. Gosia is an investigator in a number of clinical trials and other studies within the CDS with collaboration with UCL and KCL.  Her special interest is neuroimaging in dementia where she collaborates with   researches  the Clinical Imaging Sciences Centre at BSMS. • 01403 223244 

Mokhtar Isaac

Consultant in Old Age and General Adult Psychiatry
Dr Moktar Isaac

Dr Mokhtar Isaac is a consultant in Old Age and General Adult psychiatry at Sussex Partnership NHS Foundation trust and  Honorary Clinical Senior Lecturer with BSMS. He has special interest in medical education and is involved in under and postgraduate teaching. His research interests include dementia and suicide prevention. 

Breda Flaherty - web

Co-Lead for Primary Care Dementia Fellowship Programme
Breda Flaherty 

Breda Flaherty is Course Director for the MSc in Leadership and Commissioning, where she leads on Developing Effective Commissioners and on Clinical Leadership. Breda is a faculty member at the NHS Leadership Academy, a Leadership Associate at the King’s Fund, and Commissioning Development Associate at the National Skills Academy for Social Care (NSASC). She focuses on developing clinical, managerial and social care leaders in changing organisations to improve services. • 01273 644506 

Denise Roden

Project Administrator, Time for Dementia
Denise Roden  

Denise manages the administration for the Time for Dementia programme which gives medical students the opportunity to visit a family living with dementia over a period of two years. Denise works closely with the Evaluation Lead, Dr Stephanie Daley, to ensure the smooth running of the programme. This includes pairing the students with the participant families, keeping track of when students are out on visits and keeping in touch with the participant families. • 01273 678182

Linda Bennett 2020

Centre Administrator
Linda Bennett 

Linda Bennett works at the Centre for Dementia Studies as PA to the Director, Dr Naji Tabet, Visiting Professor in Dementia, Professor Sube Banerjee and Dr Stephanie Daley.  Working closely with colleagues, she ensures the Centre for Dementia Studies runs effectively and efficiently.  Linda also works with Dr Ben Hicks on the administration of the DETERMIND project and is Project Officer for the Time for Autism Programme which will launch in 2020.  • 01273 877896 

Alice Russell

Research Assistant
Alice Russell

Alice Russell is a Research Assistant for the DETERMIND project. She graduated from the University of Portsmouth in 2016 with a BSc (Hons) in Psychology. Since then, she undertook a Graduate Psychology Internship with the Adur, Arun and Worthing (AAW) Assessment and Treatment Service (ATS) at Sussex Partnership Foundation Trust (SPFT). Alice’s interest for dementia was established during her University dissertation where she interviewed Dementia Carers about how friendships affected their lives.

Research Assistant
Anomita Karim

Anomita Karim is currently a Research Assistant for the DETERMIND project. She graduated from the University of Birmingham in 2017 with an MA in Social Research Methods (Social Work and Professional Practice), where she wrote her dissertation on the experiences of transgender’s accessing social and healthcare in Bangladesh. After her MA she worked for Picker, a healthcare organisation in Oxford between 2018 – 2019 and worked closely with CQC in assessing how healthcare has been delivered widely across NHS trusts. Her line of interests include looking into how to improve the quality of care for those impacted with dementia, especially those from ethnic minority backgrounds. 

Jacob Reichental

Research Assistant
Jacob Reichental

Jacob Reichental is a Research Assistant on the DETERMIND study. He graduated from the University of Sussex in 2015 with a BSc in psychology before completing an MA in Social Development in 2016. Since then, Jacob has worked within older age crisis teams as a Healthcare Assistant as well as supported clients with their mental health as a CBT practitioner. Through his work with older people, he has developed an interest in the influence of biopsychosocial factors which inform the experience of dementia and older age care.

Joanna Pooley

Research Assistant
Joanna Pooley

Joanna Pooley graduated from the University of Sussex in 2012 with an MSc in Clinical Psychology and Mental Health. She went onto work with people with severe and enduring mental health problems in the housing sector and NHS. She joined the Alzheimer’s Society in 2015 where she provided information and support to people living with dementia. During her post, she facilitated the Carer Information and Support Programme (CrISP) enabling carers to share their experiences and to access peer support, whilst gaining up-to-date information about local and national services. She is passionate about improving the quality of life for people affected by dementia and is currently working as a Research Assistant on Time for Dementia. • 01273 873817 


Research Assistant
Nazire Akarsu

Nazire Akarsu worked as a Support Worker for 9 years with people with severe learning disabilities, supporting them in their home and the community. In 2016, Nazire graduated from Institute of Psychiatry, Psychology & Neuroscience (IoPPN) at King's College London with an MSc in Mental Health Services and Population Research. She has worked in multiple research posts supporting projects based at universities, within the third sector and NHS. Nazire’s interests include improving wellbeing and quality of life for people with dementia and their carers, with a particular focus on those from marginalised groups in the UK. Her most recent work reviewed psychosocial interventions for depression in carers of people with dementia from a minority ethnic background ( She is currently working as a Research Assistant on Time for Dementia. • 01273 873206 

Research Assistant
Rachel Nethercott

Rachel Nethercott is a Research Assistant on the DETERMIND study. She graduated from the University of Sussex in 2019 with an MSc in Experimental Psychology, where she wrote her dissertation on the importance of social groups for wellbeing. Prior to and alongside her Masters, she worked with a wide range of clinical service users. Her interests include social factors in mental health and inequalities in treatments and outcomes.

Yvonne Feeney 2

Research Assistant
Yvonne Feeney 

Yvonne Feeney qualified as a Registered General Nurse from University College Cork in 2003. Following qualification, Yvonne worked as a staff nurse in the acute care settings before commencing her career managing care services for older people in Scotland in 2008. During this time, she gained a keen interest in dementia care, specifically in relation to improving quality of life for those living with dementia in the care home setting. This led to an interest in applied research and the role education plays in improving awareness and attitudes toward the condition. In 2016 Yvonne joined the Centre for Dementia Studies at BSMS to commence her role as research assistant on the Time for Dementia programme. Yvonne also supports clinical research studies in a nursing capacity at the Dementia Research Unit in Crowborough. She commenced her MSc in Dementia Studies at University of Brighton in 2017. • 01273 873 211

Mel Thomas2

Business Manager
Melanie Thomas

Melanie Thomas is the Business Manager for the Centre for Dementia Studies, working between BSMS and SPFT supporting the setup of the programmes.  Her role includes setting up contracts and managing budgets for the Centre for Dementia Studies and the Time for Dementia and Time for Autism programmes. She also supports the Dementia Care Improvement Network and works alongside HEKSS to report dementia training data. Melanie has worked in the NHS and Clinical Research Organisations for many years and has a project management and research governance background.

Dementia Research Unit (DRU)

Dementia Research Unit (DRU) at Sussex Partnership NHS Trust is a central element of CDS. The Unit is dedicated to research into the treatment of Alzheimer’s disease and other dementias, and has been conducting clinical trials since 2007. An active member of DeNDRoN, the Unit aims to provide a positive experience to people taking part in research whilst investigating new possibilities for the treatment and care of those with dementia.

Making important contributions to dementia research, DRU has developed into a centre of excellence in dementia trials, with particular strengths in the successful conduct of industry sponsored studies.

Research Nurses and Clinical Research Coordinators
Rachel Russel • Marcela Carvajal

The Research Team at the DRU coordinate a range of industry-sponsored and academic research studies addressing Alzheimer’s Disease. They work closely with patients and their caregivers to provide information about research studies and, once consented into a study, coordinate their journey through it. They undertake clinical assessments, deliver research intervention and collate study data, as well as promoting a strong research culture across the Trust and beyond.

Marcus Irving • Lynda Trumpess

As Administrators for DRU, Lynda ensures that the office runs smoothly day-to-day and Marcus assists in the financial and administration of the research studies.