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Wolfson Institute of Population Health

Dr Ruth Evans, PhD, MSc, BA CPsychol


Research Associate in Health Psychology



I joined the Centre for Prevention, Detection and Diagnosis at Wolfson Institute of Population Health as a Postdoctoral Research Associate in Health Psychology in March 2023. I completed my academic training in psychology at Oxford University (BA Experimental Psychology) followed by an MSc in Health Psychology (Bath University) and a PhD in Health Psychology exploring the psychological impact of public education about testicular cancer (UCL/ University of London).
I am particularly interested in using psychological theory to understand health behaviour,  healthcare interactions and to design and evaluate interventions to optimise people’s health and health care service delivery. I have experience in paediatric and adult health care; primary, secondary and tertiary care; cancer (prevention, early detection, staging) and critical care (paediatric intensive care retrieval).

I am a mixed methods researcher with experience of qualitative interview studies, as well as conducting experimental studies, cross-sectional and longitudinal questionnaire studies. 
Currently I am working on research that aims to develop and pilot tools to facilitate cancer awareness, enhanced safety netting and risk reduction following urgent referral for suspected cancer, when cancer was not found. This research includes exploring the scope of ‘teachable moments’ in the urgent referral pathway for suspected cancer.  This research builds on findings from our recent project - The ORCA Study - which assessed, within this patient group, future risk of cancer and the feasibility and acceptability of interventions to support earlier diagnosis or prevent future cancer.


Research Interests:

Using psychological theory to understand the psycho-social/ behavioural consequences of being assessed for symptoms suspicious of cancer and subsequently being discharged with a no cancer found diagnosis.

Identifying factors that can influence how individuals perceive cancer awareness, help-seeking and risk reduction support. 

Identifying opportunities to encourage behaviours that may reduce future risk of cancer along with  earlier help-seeking for symptoms of cancer. 


Please follow through for a complete list of Ruth's publications.

Evans Ruth EC, Waller, Jo, Nicholson Brian D, Round, Thomas, Gildea, Carolynn, Smith, Deb, Scott, Suzanne E Should we? Could we?  Feasibility of interventions to support prevention or early diagnosis of future cancer following urgent referral: a qualitative study Patient Education Counselling 2023 DOI: 10.1016/j.pec.2023.107757

Evans REC, Barber V, Seaton S, Ramnarayan P, Davies P, Wray J, DEPICT Study Group. Is Parental Presence in the Ambulance Associated With Parental Satisfaction During Emergency Pediatric Intensive Care Retrieval? A Cross-Sectional Questionnaire Study Pediatr Crit Care Med. 2022; 23(9):708-716. doi: 10.1097/PCC.0000000000002995

Evans RE, Taylor SA, Beare s, Halligan S, Morton A, Oliver A, Rockall A, Miles A. Perceived patient burden and acceptability of whole body MRI for staging lung and colorectal cancer; comparisons with standard staging investigations. British Journal of Radiology. 2018; 91(1086): Doi.10.1259/bjr.20170731

Evans, REC., Morris, M., Sekhon, M., Buszewicz, M., Walter, F., Waller, J., & Simon, AE. Evaluating the acceptability of a gynaecological cancer information leaflet within general practice Br J Gen Pract. 2014; 64(623):e372-80. doi: 10.3399/bjgp14X680161. 

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