Karen was diagnosed with Parkinson’s in 2009 which was the catalyst for her passion for health research. Research has improved her understanding and knowledge and given her confidence to question and follow a proactive approach.
Karen is also a carer for her Autistic son, which has enabled her to gain personal experience of the challenges also facing carers.Working within a special Primary school as a member of Staff and School Governor has enabled her to share multi perspective input for complex health conditions.
As a service user representative on the N Wales neuroscience Board, Karen has gained experience of working at different levels ensuring a patient focus to all discussions. She is an active member of Health & Care Research Wales particularly Parc Bangor PPI group working collaboratively with researchers, scientists and health boards to ensure research is focussed on the needs of the people.
Karen joined the Genomics Sounding Board last year where she feels valued. The Sounding Board is able to bring together scientists, researchers, academics, policy makers and service users together to ensure patients and the public have a prominent voice in designing and securing world class research. The group plays an important role in co-producing health services for the future of all people in Wales .