Will has over 10 years of research and management experience in public health, primary care, epidemiology of infection and health protection. Will specializes in the generation and application of evidence to support effective interventions in a range of settings, including health and social care, community development and social transformation. His strengths are strategic leadership, analytical interpretation, teaching and application of evidence from diverse sources.
In 2012, Will started Willsop Limited, a research consultancy supplying targeted evidence to health and social care providers. Will is also an associate of Hitch Marketing Ltd. Willsop clients include Wirral Borough Council, ChaMPs and Astra Zeneca. Recent projects include the evaluation of alcohol harm prevention campaigns, early intervention for COPD and a workforce welfare programme.
Dr Will Sopwith's Papers
Norovirus outbreak in a cruise ship saling around the British Isles: investigation and multi-agency management of an international outbreak
Roberto Vivancos, Alex Keenan, Dr Will Sopwith, Ken Smith, Catherine Quigley, Ken Mutton, Evdokia Dardamissis, Gordon Nichols, John Harris, Christopher Gallimore, Linda Verhoef, Qutub Syed, Professor John Reid
Journal of Infection, Volume 60, Issue 6, pp 478–485, 2010.
Abstract: Objective: Managing an outbreak of gastroenteritis (GI) on board a cruise ship while minimising disruption to passengers' on board and shore visit activities is difficult. For this reason it is important to understand the complex patterns of transmission in a closed community. We describe the epidemiological investigation of an outbreak of norovirus during an international cruise. Methods: A retrospective cohort study was conducted using information from lists routinely maintained by the travel company, including the passenger manifest, and organised coach tour lists. Information on air-conditioning (AC) systems was used to assess the possible sources of exposures. Findings: Of the 1194 passengers 191 (16%) and 5 crew (<1%) became ill with GI symptoms. The attack rate was higher amongst passengers whose cabin was on the main deck (RR 3.41, 95% CI 1.47–7.94) that houses both passengers' cabins and leisure facilities including shops. Passengers who went on one of the organised coach tours where there were symptomatic passengers were at an increased risk of infection (RR 2.14, CI 1.51–3.03). Analysis of the 56 AC sections on the ship and did not detect an association with infection. Conclusions: Patterns of transmission of norovirus on a cruise ship are complex. Our study suggests infections are more likely among those passengers staying in areas of the ship that are highly transited or used for communal activities and more difficult to clean. Emphasis on the importance of early reporting of symptoms can help minimise transmission. Internationally agreed guidelines on the management of outbreaks on cruise ships are needed.
BMJ, 329, 1239, 2004.
Behind the mask. Journey through an epidemic: some observations of contrasting public health responses to SARS
Qutub Syed, Dr Will Sopwith, Martyn Regan, Professor Mark Bellis
Journal of Epidemiology and Community Health. 57(11), 855-856, 2003.
Abstract: SARS has been called the first global epidemic of the 21st century and has been the cause of a massive and varied public health response in many countries of the world. This report describes observations made by two authors on a journey from Manchester in the United Kingdom to Chiang Mai in Thailand during the peak of global transmission. The public response to SARS, particularly characterised by the wearing of face masks, seemed to outstrip official guidance. Though of uncertain protective benefit, the wearing of masks may have contributed to the awareness of the collective and personal responsibility in combating infectious disease. Active and empowered involvement of the general public in implementing and cooperating with public health control measures supported by national and international authorities has clearly helped to bring SARS under control. The public health significance of such potent symbols as the face mask may be considered in strategies to tackle other emerging infections.