Institute for Ageing

Staff Profile

Dr Adam Todd

Reader in Pharmaceutical Public Health


Adam Todd is a Reader in Pharmaceutical Public Health at Newcastle University. He is a qualified pharmacist registered with the General Pharmaceutical Council.  He was previously a Senior Lecturer at Durham University where he held the roles of MPharm Programme Director, Director of Education, and Deputy Director of the Centre of Health and Inequalities Research (CHIR). 

Adam is actively involved in delivering the MPharm Programme at Newcastle; he approaches pharmacy education in an integrated way, and combines both science and practice elements in his teaching. Using this integrated approach, Adam has published two international books (Wiley) exploring the use of antibacterial and anticancer agents in clinical practice.   

He is an academic member of the General Pharmaceutical Council Accreditation and Recognition Panel and also contributes to the national pharmacist registration exam in his role as a question writer. 

His research is highly interdisciplinary, and uses methods from the social sciences, public health, clinical medicine, and epidemiology.  He is an academic editor for PLOS ONE, and a member of the NIHR RfPB regional advisory panel for the North East and Cumbria.

 He previously led a research team that explored healthcare access of community pharmacy; the research showed that community pharmacy access is greatest in the most deprived areas - a term that was later called the ‘positive pharmacy care law’.  This research has underpinned the developed of many community pharmacy public health services in the UK. A current research project, an NIHR-funded trial, CHEMIST (Community pHarmaciEs Mood Intervention Study), seeks to build on this work, and explore how community pharmacies can be used to deliver psychological support to people with subthreshold depression. 

He was a key collaborator of the HiNEWS project (Health Inequalities in European Welfare States) along with academic partners from York (UK), Siegen (Germany), Harvard (US), and Trondheim (Norway).

Adam is also interested in rational use of medicines; specifically, his research focuses on optimising medication in vulnerable populations, such as in older adults, or those with life limiting illness.  He is part of an international group of researchers that seek to reduce inappropriate medication use and polypharmacy. He is involved in a number of international collaborative projects in this area, with academics from Australia (Sydney), Sweden (Karolinska Institutet), and the US (Texas).

He still contributes to the care of patients on a regular basis; he is an honorary consultant pharmacist and works alongside the palliative care Multidisciplinary Team providing guidance on (de)prescribing; he also works as a community pharmacist delivering public health interventions to the local community. 


Adam is involved in a range regional, national, and international multidisciplinary projects focusing on pharmaceutical public health and medicine utilisation in vulnerable populations. 

Current research students:

Nick Walton (funded through the ESRC), co-supervised with Prof. Clare Bambra and Prof. Luke Vale

Laurie Davies (funded through the NIHR SPCR), co-supervised with Prof. Barbara Hanratty, Prof. Joy Adamson, and Dr. Andrew Kingston

Ruth Norris (funded through the Barbour Foundation), co-supervised with Prof. Linda Sharp and Dr. Alastair Greystoke

Mithila Mahesh (self-funded), co-supervised with Dr. John-Paul Taylor, Dr. Robert Dudley, Dr. Daniel Collerton




Adam is a passionate educator and teacher, and has contributed to the development of a number of innovative pharmacy programmes in the UK. He strongly believes that an integrated approach to pharmacy education – combining both science and practice elements – is the cornerstone to a successful MPharm degree.

He has extensive experience of developing new programmes, and was part of the team at Durham University that developed a highly innovative MPharm degree programme, which gained full accreditation with the General Pharmaceutical Council (the independent regulator for pharmacy education in the UK) without any conditions or recommendations. Adam has been external examiner at a number of different Schools of Pharmacy, and also serves as an academic member of the General Pharmaceutical Council Accreditation and Recognition Panel.

He has occupied a range of leadership positions in higher education, including Module Leader, Year Leader, Programme Director and Chair of Education Committee. He also has experience of developing work-based learning within an MPharm degree, and was one of the first that attempted to embed students in different communities of practice where they undertake genuine peripheral participation within clinical environments. 

Adam has an important role in teaching the MPharm degree at Newcastle, and currently teaches around 200 contact hours per year. His teaching is regularly recognised by students as some of the best in the University. In recent years, he has developed a series of small case-based integration sessions that allow students to contextualise their learning and apply key concepts of science to solve simple clinical problems often encountered by patients.