Imperial College London

Alex Bottle

Faculty of MedicineSchool of Public Health

Reader in Medical Statistics



+44 (0)20 7332 8964robert.bottle




3 Dorset Rise, London EC4Y 8ENCharing Cross HospitalCharing Cross Campus





Many of us rely on our local hospital, but how do we know if it's safe? Every year we expect our healthcare system to treat more patients with more problems and to ever higher standards. We clearly need useable information on performance. The NHS benefits from huge but complex databases, and it's my job to help doctors, managers and patients make sense of them.

On secondment to the public inquiry into the crimes of GP Harold Shipman, I investigated statistical methods that could have been used to spot Shipman earlier. I then combined these with my interest in risk adjustment and experience in handling national administrative data sets to devise the statistical methodology behind Dr Foster Intelligence’s widely used Real Time Monitoring tool. An early warning system of potential problems with care, it correctly identified Mid Staffordshire NHS Trust as having unacceptably high death rates and was a trigger for the national regulator to investigate. I have appeared on UK and Canadian radio to explain hospital performance measurement to the general public.

I teach study design, statistics and critical appraisal of literature on undergraduate and postgraduate taught courses. I also supervise and examine PhD students.

Potential research students interested in quantitative health services research are welcome to contact me informally at



Aylin PP, Bottle RA, Ruiz M, Global Comparators Project: International comparison of 30-day In-hospital mortality by day of the week., Bmj Quality & Safety, ISSN:2044-5423

Askari A, Nachiappan S, Currie A, et al., 2017, The relationship between ethnicity, social deprivation and late presentation of colorectal cancer., Cancer Epidemiol, Vol:47, Pages:88-93

Bouras G, Burns EM, Howell AM, et al., 2017, Linked hospital and primary care database analysis of the impact of short-term complications on recurrence in laparoscopic inguinal hernia repair., Hernia

Bouras G, Markar SR, Burns EM, et al., 2017, The psychological impact of symptoms related to esophagogastric cancer resection presenting in primary care: A national linked database study., Eur J Surg Oncol, Vol:43, Pages:454-460


Byrne B, Aylin P, Bottle RA, et al., Failure to engage in surgical quality improvement research is associated with poorer quality of care, Royal Society of Medicine, Coloproctology section: Overseas meeting in Leuven

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