Imperial College London

Dr Austen El-Osta

Faculty of MedicineSchool of Public Health

Primary Care Research Manager



+44 (0)20 7594 7604a.el-osta Website




323Reynolds BuildingCharing Cross Campus





I am Director of the Self-Care Academic Research Unit (SCARU) & Primary Care Research Manager at the School of Public Health. I'm also supporting the WHO Collaborating Centre for Public Health Education and Training, NIHR Diagnostic Evidence Co-operative London, West London Research Network (WeLReN), Imperial Research Hub and Imperial College Healthcare NHS Trust (ICHT) Directorate of Public Health & Primary Care in the same capacity.

My principal aim is to widen access & participation in research and to help accelerate the widespread adoption & diffusion of evidence-based health and wellbeing interventions.

Prior to assuming this role, I was based at Guy’s Hospital where I worked in a similar capacity within the NIHR Clinical Research Network. My earlier career spanned a number of disparate fields including molecular & cell biology, vision research, laser-tissue interaction & medical device engineering.

Self-Care Academic Research Unit (SCARU)

SCARU is a tripartite collaboration between Imperial College School of Public Health, the Self-Care Forum & the International Self-Care Foundation where I am also Director & Trustee. SCARU will explore how the application of self-care could result in improved outcomes & lower dependency on NHS resources in the contemporary setting, whilst also identifying key evidence-based recommendations for the consideration of commissioners of health & policy makers. The Unit will act as a hub with the aim of making the absolute case for self care by coordinating a wide portfolio of research activity in the follwing domains:

  • Evidence synthesis to investigate various aspects of self-care & how this links to empowerment, health literacy & resilience in the community
  • Evaluation of self-care interventions, pilots, initiatives & existing services, including audits of local/national importance
  • Collaborative working with industry sponsors & device manufacturers to support technology enabled self-care approaches
  • Supporting the NHS & wider health economy by making the absolute case for self care; by understanding how it can benefit the wider health economy from the perspective of funding of outcomes as opposed to activities
  • Establishing & maintaining a database / repository of evidence on self care
  • Developing & championing a self-care in mental health theme
  • Influencing inter/national policy on self-care for people & patient benefit


A Whistlestop Tour of the NHS

Flattening the Curve with Self-Care

Vocational interests

  • Self-Care communities of pracrtice
  • Asset Based Community Development (ABCD)
  • Leveraging Community Assets to tackling Social Isolation & Loneliness
  • Lifestyle modification & behaviour change (easier siad than done!)
  • Use of point of care testing in the primary care & community settings
  • Innovation praxis & change management in the NHS
  • The case for the emergence of the ‘enabling state’ to supplant the existing ‘welfare state’ ethos in the UK
  • Workplace Health Promotion

I hold a Doctorate in Medicine from King’s College London, a Masters in Public Administration (MPA) from the London South Bank University, an MSc in Pathology & Virology from Imperial College London & a BSc in Molecular Biology & Genetics from Queen Mary University of London. I was recently awarded Chartered Manager (C.Mgr) status by the Chartered Management Institute but failed miserably at becoming a certified PRINCE2 practitioner.

I'm otherwise fascinated by bees, honey & apitherapy. Apparently, I continue to be inspired by Bach's reverential French Suites & Partitas, and consider Martha Argerich as the most formidable pianist alive today, with the veritable Andras Schiff in second place...



El-Osta A, Iman W, Manisha K, et al., 2022, Public perceptions on routine use of screening tools for domestic abuse in health and social care settings: an exploratory cross-sectional study, Bmc Public Health, ISSN:1471-2458

El-Osta A, Webber I, Alaa A, 2022, What is the suitability of clinical vignettes in benchmarking the performance of online symptom checkers? An audit study (vol 12, e053566, 2022), Bmj Open, Vol:12, ISSN:2044-6055

El-Osta A, Kerr G, Alaa A, et al., 2022, Investigating the use and effectiveness of lifestyle medicine approaches to tackle erectile dysfunction: a cross-sectional eSurvey based study, Journal of Sexual Medicine, ISSN:1743-6095

Gibson H, Huang D, Hayhoe B, et al., 2022, A virtual group consultation model of care for menopause treatment, New England Journal of Medicine, Vol:3, ISSN:0028-4793

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