Toby Helliwell

Although born in England, I lived most of my childhood in Zambia where I developed a keen desire to become a doctor. This was realised after completing my undergraduate medical degree at Birmingham University. I worked in various hospital jobs in the West Midlands and South of England. I also worked in Australia both in rural and urban settings. Returning to England I was fortunate enough to be accepted onto the North Staffordshire academic vocational training scheme for general practitioners. 

This set me on my academic road and I have since completed my GP specialist training and work as a GP partner in Newcastle-under-Lyme in Staffordshire where I also have the opportunity to teach and mentor undergraduate students in a general practice setting.  

During my academic career I have completed a Master’s degree in Medicine and a PhD in Musculoskeletal General Practice. I am now supervising PhD and Master students myself. I am currently a Professor in General Practice, a Fellow of the Royal College of General Practitioners and work as a research scholar for the clinical research network as well as being part of the global health team at Keele University. I was part of that team since its inception and have developed formal partnerships with institutions in Eastern and Southern Africa, South and East Asia. My interests are wide, but my main focus is in improving community health and access for all, particularly around disabling and painful conditions.  

I have also developed an interest in metal health which is often a highly stigmatised issue with little or no access to help in many parts of the world but can significantly impact on people’s livelihoods at multiple levels if not recognised and treated appropriately. I believe that improved community health through relevant, simple, evidence-based interventions and management creates the opportunity for all to live well and prosper.