Dental Hygienist wins prestigious award

Dental Hygienist appointed to Vivienne Wohl PhD studentship

Claire McCarthy

Claire McCarthy, Dental Hygienist at the Dental Institute, has been selected through a competitive interview process to receive the Vivienne Wohl studentship.  The prestigious scholarship is offered by the Maurice Wohl foundation, and Claire will seek to examine how to best communicate risk of poor oral health as a means of supporting patient behaviour change in primary dental care.

Claire will be one of only a few Dental Hygienists trained for a behavioural PhD and she brings clinical skills into the research arena - a great example where clinicians and researchers can meet and work together. She brings to the project many years of clinical experience, a background in postgraduate work in education and a lot of enthusiasm and interest in combining clinical with research work. Risk communication as a tool to change health behaviour has been used successfully before in medical settings and has been evaluated in a small Randomised Controlled Trial within the Dental Institute. The project seeks to build on and extend this work. 

The project is supervised by Dr Koula Asimakopoulou, Reader in Health Psychology and Dr. Blanaid Daly Academic Lead for Special Care Dentistry and Athena Swan Chair for the Dental Institute.

Claire McCarthy has a Masters Degree in Teaching and Learning in Higher Education, and was appointed Visiting Professor in the Department of Periodontics & Implant Dentistry at NYU in 2014 and 201. She has taught extensively on three NYU post-graduate Periodontal Programmes as well as the Undergraduate Periodontal education programme both at KCL and NYU.