Centre for Health and Bioinformatics


Professor Sarah Slight

Professor of Patient Safety and Digital Health


Sarah Slight is Professor in Patient Safety and Digital Health (from 1st Aug 2022). Her research is aimed at developing and evaluating novel digital health technologies to improve patient safety, inform clinical decision-making, and support patient care.

She has been awarded substantial peer-reviewed research funding totalling over £9.86 million from national and international funders, including UK NIHR, US Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality, US Food and Drug Administration, and European Commission. All these grants have had a focus on digital technologies and/or patient safety. She has worked with international academic and commercial partners to integrate and optimise digital technologies in UK healthcare settings; this included a 2.4 million EU Horizon 2020 grant to assess the performance of an innovative technology (MedEye) to prevent medication administration errors that was ranked one of the top 5% projects in Europe. She collaborates on the £67 million Early Detection of Neurodegenerative Diseases (EDoN) initiative (https://edon-initiative.org) led by Alzheimer's Research UK and Gates Ventures, which brings together global experts in data science, digital technology and neurodegeneration from over 35 universities and technology companies worldwide. She is co-investigator on £2.4m NIHR Programme Grant for Applied Research that aims to develop and evaluate a complex ePrescribing-based Antimicrobial Stewardship (ePAMS ) intervention for hospitals. She also has an interest in how digital technologies can support patients on their care pathways and the value of teachable moments in encouraging behaviour change in surgical patients.


She has a substantial volume of high quality research publications (>130 articles), most of which have been published in top ranking journals, such as Lancet Digital Health; JAMIA; BMJ Quality and Safety and clinical fields (Critical Care Medicine; Allergy; BMJ). Her paper entitled ‘The Case Study Approach’ has been cited >2,400 times (Google Scholar). She supervises a number of doctoral students who have published in high impact journals like The Lancet and presented their work to UK Houses of Parliament. These PhD students have also won multiple awards, including winner of the FMS Insights Public Lecture Doctoral Thesis Prize (Hassan, 2021) and runner up (Robinson, 2021)finalist in STEM for Britain (Hassan, 2021), best oral presentations at UK Faculty of Clinical Informatics Conference (Hassan, 2021) and Royal Pharmaceutical Society Conference (Robinson, 2019).


She currently serves as Chair of the Membership Standing Committee for the UK Faculty of Clinical Informatics, NHS Digital (FCI; https://facultyofclinicalinformatics.org.uk), a Charitable Incorporated Organisation that aims to advance public health through the best use of information and information technology. She was a member of the NIHR Health Technology Assessment (HTA) Advisory Panel, which assessed funding applications for primary care research, many of which have had a substantial beneficial influence on practice at regional and national levels. She is currently Associate Editor for the Journal for Patient Safety and Associate Editor for BMC Medical Informatics and Decision Making.


She moved to Harvard Medical School in January 2012 to work alongside internationally renowned expert Prof David W. Bates. She was one of a team of world leading experts in Health Information Technology who presented a White Paper to the U.S. FDA aimed at better understanding and improving the safety of electronic ordering of medications. She has co-authored several national reports and book chapters on the topic of medication errors and health information technology, including: Patient Safety and Healthcare Improvement at a Glance (Wiley)Americas Healthcare Transformation: Strategies and Innovations (Rutgers), and Key Advances in Clinical Informatics: Transforming Health Care through Health Information Technology (Elsevier). She also contributed to the chapter on Safer Primary Care: Medication Errors for first edition of the World Health Organisation (WHO) Safer Primary Care Technical Series.


She was awarded the Royal Pharmaceutical Society Practice Research Award (Sept 2017) for her contribution to pharmacy practice research in the UK, the Partners in Excellence Award for Leadership and Innovation twice (Jan 2017, Jan 2015) for her contribution to international research with Harvard University, and NIHR SPCR Career Development Award (Sept 2010-13).