Dr Juliet Usher-Smith

Photo of Dr Juliet Usher-Smith

Official Fellow; Director of Studies in Medicine


I am really looking forward to re-joining Emmanuel as a Fellow and Director of Clinical Studies in Medicine. Having been a student at the College for nine years, first as a Natural Scientist and then as a Medic and PhD student, it very much feels like coming back home. I am now a GP locally in Cambridge and Assistant Professor of General Practice within the Department of Public Health and Primary Care.

Outside work, I enjoy being outdoors either walking, running or spending time in the garden, and visiting new places. I also read detective stories when I can find the time and am, slowly, trying to learn Italian as my husband’s family live in Italy.

Teaching Interests

Alongside research, I am also passionate about supporting teaching and education. As well as teaching medical students and supervising undergraduate, postgraduate and doctoral student research projects, I am currently the Strategic Lead for Education and Training within the Department of Public Health and Primary Care. I also lead the Primary Care Research theme within a University MPhil in Population Health Sciences and a Minor module in Applied Health Research within the Biological and Biomedical Sciences Part II. In 2018, with colleagues from the Department of Public Health and Primary Care and Medical Library, I also set up a medical student systematic review group that has provided training in systematic review methods to over 250 students and matched 200 with researchers conducting reviews across 11 University departments. I hope to be able to use some of these experiences to support students at Emmanuel.


After completing my PhD in cellular physiology, my research focus shifted to more applied clinical research. Initially working on the diagnostic pathway of children with type 1 diabetes, I developed an interest in how we measure, understand and use risk within the context of healthcare. With the increase in the quality and quantity of data available within healthcare, it is now possible to estimate each person’s risk of developing, or dying from, a given disease with increasing accuracy. This potentially allows us to allocate healthcare resources more efficiently and to reduce the potential harms of screening, diagnostic tests or treatment amongst those least likely to benefit. However, stratifying care in this way requires not only valid and reliable means of estimating risk, but also consideration of how it would best be implemented, including the practical, ethical, psychological and behavioural impacts. My research focuses on these areas, seeking to understand how best to implement risk-stratified medicine, particularly to promote the prevention and early diagnosis of cancer and cardiovascular disease.