Our experts

Looking for an expert to talk about asthma? Our experts regularly speak out in the media about asthma and the work we do at Asthma UK.

Contact the media team to speak to an expert:

0207 786 4949 or mediaoffice@asthma.org.uk.

Dr Samantha Walker, Director of Research and Innovation

Bio: Samantha Walker holds a PhD in mechanisms of allergy and asthma, and has worked in the field for over 25 years. Samantha's work on allergies and asthma has been published in a range of research journals including the Journal of Allergy and Clinical Immunology. Before working at Asthma UK, Samantha held a range of roles including running outpatient clinics, teaching and lecturing healthcare professionals, and running and designing research projects.  

Media expertise: Samantha is available for interviews on a wide range of asthma-related topics including asthma research, pollution, allergies, and asthma care and management. She has previously appeared on Radio 4's Today Programme, BBC Breakfast, ITV News and Sky News.

Dr Andy Whittamore, Clinical Lead at Asthma UK and practising GP with specialist interest in respiratory medicine 

Bio: Andy is a practising GP in Portsmouth and Asthma UK's Clinical Lead. He has worked as a GP for over 15 years, and has a wealth of knowledge about asthma and respiratory care. He has held a range of roles driving innovation and quality improvement around asthma including working for the Primary Care respiratory Society UK, on the Department of Health's Respiratory Programme and on developing national guidelines on asthma. 

Media expertise: Andy is able to provide expert clinical insight on a range of topics including asthma in primary care, digital innovation in asthma care, diagnosis and treatment. He has taken part in a number of interviews for national and regional outlets including the BBC, ITN and Sky and written for a range of publications including GP Online, Healthwatch and People's Friend. 

Jessica Kirby and Emma Rubach, Heads of Health Advice (job share)

Bio: Jessica (left) and Emma oversee Asthma UK’s health advice website and other digital products, ensuring people with asthma have easy access to evidence-based, clinically sound asthma management advice wherever and whenever they need it. Before moving to Asthma UK, Jessica was at Cancer Research UK and Emma was Head of Content at the UK’s information and advice service for young people, The Mix.

Media experience: Emma (left) and Jessica regularly offer asthma health advice comment in the press and have appeared on TV and radio across a range of national and regional media outlets. They can provide insight on asthma triggers like pollen and cold weather, using inhalers and spacers, asthma management, and the main barriers and challenges people with asthma face to managing their condition and reducing the risk of asthma attacks.

Dr Erika Kennington, Head of Research

Bio: Erika Kennington holds a PhD from Kings College London and has worked as a research funder in the charity and not-for-profit sector for 10 years. Her role encompasses medical research funding strategy, research programme management, assessment of the impact of research and influencing investment in research. Prior to Asthma UK, she worked as a published researcher in both industry and academia across a number of biomedical and health disciplines. 

Media expertise: Erika regularly comments on asthma research in national and regional outlets, and has taken part in several regional broadcast interviews. 

Krisnah Poinasamy, Research and Innovation Influencing Lead

Bio: Krisnah oversees Asthma UK's policy development and influencing activity,  including a focus on what investment is needed in asthma research. He has worked in the charity sector for over 10 years for a range of organisations including Oxfam. Krisnah holds a Masters degree in Human Rights Law from the University of Nottingham.

Media expertise: Krisnah has been interviewed for a range of media including national newspapers, online outlets and radio. He is able to provide insight on key policy changes that could improve the lives of people with asthma including talking about our campaign to stop asthma prescription charges, the need to secure transnational investment into research, and our work to influence the NHS to commit to a trial of smart inhalers.