Alexander Smith

Alexander Smith better

Lecturer in Occupational Therapy

School of Allied Health and Community

Department of Allied Health

Contact Details

tel: 01905 543734

Alex qualified as an Occupational Therapist in 2011. Since qualifying Alex has had a varied career mixing clinical and research roles along the way.

In keeping with this, Alex continues to work as a Stroke Specialist Occupational Therapist at Wye Valley NHS Trust. This he feels allows him to remain in touch with the everyday needs of patients, to conduct NHS based research and to be able to translate the most up to date research into practice for patient benefit.

Before joining the team at the University of Worcester, Alex completed a Stroke Association funded PhD fellowship, in which he led the APORIAS study as Chief Investigator for 11 NHS sites in England, recruiting over 200 patients. He is currently analysing the study data for publication and presentation at conferences.


2011 – BSc (Hons) Occupational Therapy

2015 – MA Analytic and Modern European Philosophy

Teaching Interests

As a clinical academic Alex has a strong interest in teaching topics related to research and evidence-based practice. He particularly enjoys demystifying the complexities of research and equipping students with the skills to be effective evidence-based practitioners.

With a clinical background in stroke & neurology, Alex is keen to impart an enthusiasm for this area of practice.

Alex is also heavily involved in post-registration learning and teaching with Royal College of Occupational Therapists Specialist Section – Neurological Practice and is currently leading a project to redesign the Starting Out in Stroke course for post-registration occupational therapist new to this specialism.

Research Interests

Alex’s research interests range across many aspects of post-stroke care and rehabilitation. He is primarily focused on how to understand the outcomes of care or rehabilitation from stroke survivors’ perspectives. Within his Stroke Association Fellowship, and as Chief Investigator of the APORIAS Study, he is investigating the use of standardised patient-reported outcome measures (PROMs) to understand the reasons why stroke survivors may not be able to complete PROMs.

Research Grants

  • Stroke Association – A Study of Cognitive, Emotional, Physical and Socioeconomic Factors Associated with Patient-Reported Outcome Measures (PROMS) Completion Post-Stroke. 2018-2023 - £95,128.00 - PI
  • Stroke Implementation Group (Welsh Government) – National Benchmarking and Measurement of Outcomes for Stroke (Utilising PROMs) - £79,427 – Co-I

Membership of Professional Bodies

  • Royal College of Occupational Therapists (RCOT)
  • Health and Care Professions Council Registered (HCPC)
  • Royal College of Occupational Therapists Specialist Section – Neurological Practice (RCOT SSNP)
  • European Stroke Organisation (ESO)
  • International Society for Quality of Life Research (ISOQOL)
  • Organisation for PSYchological Research Into Stroke (OPSYRIS)

Recent Publications



Crow, J. and Smith, A. (2023) ‘National clinical guideline for stroke for the UK and Ireland: Part LL – the challenges and opportunities posed for occupational therapists’, British Journal of Occupational Therapy. doi:10.1177/03080226231188014. (Corresponding Author)

Crow, J. and Smith, A. (2023) ‘National clinical guideline for stroke for the United Kingdom and Ireland: Part I – an overview of the updated recommendations’, British Journal of Occupational Therapy. doi:10.1177/03080226231188020. (Corresponding Author)

Corrigan AE, Carter B, Smith A, Pennington A, Hewitt J. More precise: A multicentre prospective study of patient reported outcome measures in stroke morbidity: A cross sectional study. BMC Neurology. 2022;22(1). doi:10.1186/s12883-022-02634-0

Smith A, Hewitt J, Quinn TJ, Robling M. Patient-reported outcome measures (PROMS) use in post-stroke patient care and clinical practice: A realist synthesis protocol. Systematic Reviews. 2021;10(1). doi:10.1186/s13643-021-01682-w (Corresponding Author)

Smith A, Bains N, Copeland L, Pennington A, Carter B, Hewitt J. Morbidity prevalence estimate at 6 months following a stroke: Protocol for a cohort study. JMIR Research Protocols. 2020;9(6). doi:10.2196/15851 (Corresponding Author)

Hewitt J, Pennington A, Smith A, Gething S, Price M, White J, et al. A multi-centre, UK-based, non-inferiority randomised controlled trial of 4 follow-up assessment methods in stroke survivors. BMC Medicine. 2019;17(1). doi:10.1186/s12916-019-1350-5

Smith A, Pennington A, Carter B, Gething S, Price M, White J, et al. Acceptability of the method of administration of a patient-reported outcome measure (PROM) with stroke survivors, a randomised controlled trial protocol. Trials. 2018;19(1). doi:10.1186/s13063-018-2694-4 (Corresponding Author)

Evans J, Smith A, Gibbons C, Alonso J, Valderas J. The National Institutes of Health Patient-reported Outcomes Measurement Information System (PROMIS): A View from the UK. Patient Related Outcome Measures. 2018; Volume 9:345–52. doi:10.2147/prom.s141378

Conference Presentations

UK Stroke Forum – Liverpool, UK - Acceptably & Feasibility of a Patient Reported outcome measure in Stroke; A Study Overview. [Poster Presentation] - 12/2022

CAHPR West Midlands – Virtual, A derivation and validation of a 5 Item Short Form Nottingham Extended Activities of Daily Living Scale (SF-NEADL); Utilising the VISTA Rehab data set. [Speaker] - 11/2022

External Roles


  • Stroke Specialist Occupational Therapist – Wye Valley NHS Trust
  • R&D Lead – Stroke Clinical Forum - Royal College of Occupational Therapists Specialist Section – Neurological Practice
  • Project Lead - Starting Out in Stroke Course Redesign - Royal College of Occupational Therapists Specialist Section – Neurological Practice
  • Research Champion - Royal College of Occupational Therapists
  • Founder and Steering Group Member - Occupational Therapy Research and Evidenced Based-Practice Network Wales (ORiENT)
  • Expert Member – NHS Health Research Authority/ Health & Care Research Wales – Research Ethics Committee
  • Reviewer for several peer-reviewed scientific journals
  • Conference Scientific Abstract Reviewer for UK Stroke Forum (annually) and International Society for Quality of Life Research (annually)


  • Contributor – National Clinical Guideline for Stroke for the United Kingdom & Ireland (2023)
  • Steering Group Member - Royal College of Occupational Therapists & James Lind Alliance Research Priority Setting Partnership
  • R&D Board Member (co-opted) - Royal College of Occupational Therapists