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Live Panel

on Inequalities in Women's Health and Research

BIAS: The Panel

Our online panel was hosted by Alison Curtis from TodayFM who was joined by:

  • Dr Laura Kelly, Historian and Lecturer, University of Strathclyde, Glasgow,

  • Jeanne Sutton, Board Member, Endometriosis Association of Ireland,

  • Dr Michael O’Reilly, Endocrinologist, Beaumont Hospital,

  • Dr Cliona Loughnane, Health Coordinator, National Women’s Council of Ireland,

  • Rachel Kenna, Chief Nursing Officer, Women’s Health Taskforce


Alison Curtis
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Alison Curtis moved from Canada to Ireland in 1999. She began working at Today FM that same year. Throughout the her time there she has Produced the Ian Dempsey Breakfast Show and presented her own programs The Last Splash, Night Time with Alison Curtis and Early Breakfast. She is currently presenting Weekend Breakfast Saturdays 8-11am and Sundays 9-12.


Alison Curtis also has a weekly parenting column in the Irish Examiner and contributes to the Irish Independent.

She has been a regular panelist on the Today Show on RTE and on Elaine on Virgin Media.

She has hosted several podcasts as well.


Alison lives in Dublin with her husband Anton Hegarty and 9 year old daughter Joan, who was born at the Rotunda in May 2011.


Twitter & Instagram - @alisontodayfm

Radio Presenter

Today FM


Dr Cliona Loughnane

Women's Health Coordinator,

National Women's Council of Ireland

Dr Cliona Loughnane is NWCI’s Women's Health Co-ordinator, leading policy and campaigns to improve women’s health and to end violence against women. She has more than a decade's experience in policy, research and advocacy in the NGO sector and the health service.


Her work focuses on the impact of gender on health, on reducing health inequalities for women and advocating for a public health system to provide for every woman’s health needs. She holds a Doctorate of Social Science and a Masters of Economic Science

Rachel Kenna
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Rachel Kenna is the newly appointed Chief Nursing Officer in Ireland. She is a Registered Childrens and General Nurse (RCN/RGN) and has extensive clinical and managerial experience spanning 29 years in both in Ireland and the UK.

Rachel has worked as a Deputy Chief Nursing Officer in the Department of Health since 2018 and her primary area of responsibility was nursing policy in the area of patient systems and clinical governance.  Rachel previously held the Director of Nursing post in Irelands largest Childrens hospital, Childrens Health Ireland at Crumlin.  

Rachel has a real interest in Nursing and Midwifery policy but also in wider health policy and is educated in a wide range of areas to support this.  She holds a MSc in Child Protection and Welfare and a BSc in Nursing Management. Rachel’s other educational qualifications includes a Higher Diploma in Professional Practice, critical care, Leadership, Quality in Healthcare and a Diploma in Human Rights and Equality and a Professional Diploma in Governance. Rachel is selected as a Florence Nightingale Leadership Scholar for 2021.

Chief Nursing Officer,

Women's Health Taskforce

Dr Laura Kelly

Historian of Health and Medicine,

University of Strathclyde, Glasgow

Dr Laura Kelly is a Lecturer in the History of Health and Medicine at the University of Strathclyde, Glasgow. She completed her PhD at the Department of History, NUI Galway on Irish women in medicine, c.1880s-1920s in 2010. In 2011-2012, she was lecturer in History at the Department of History, NUI Galway and from 2012-14 she was an Irish Research Council postdoctoral fellow at the Centre for the History of Medicine in Ireland, UCD. Her first book, Irish women in medicine, c.1880s-1920s: origins, education and careers was published by Manchester University Press in February, 2013 and her second book, Irish medical education and student culture, c.1850-1950 will be published by Liverpool University Press in 2017. Laura’s current research project, funded by a Wellcome Trust research fellowship, examines the history  of contraception in Ireland, c.1922-92.

Dr Michael O'Reilly
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Michael is a Consultant Endocrinologist in Beaumont Hospital, Dublin, and Honorary Clinical Associate Professor at the Royal College of Surgeons in Ireland (RCSI). After graduating from Medicine with honours from National University of Ireland Galway in 2005, Michael completed core medical training in Dublin before entering specialist training in Endocrinology, Diabetes Mellitus and General Internal Medicine through the Royal College of Physicians of Ireland. In 2012, he was awarded a Clinical Research Training Fellowship by the Wellcome Trust in the UK, which funded his PhD studies into the role of androgen excess in female metabolic disease at the University of Birmingham. He received his PhD from the University of Birmingham in 2015. From 2015-2019 he held the posts of Clinician Scientist at the University of Birmingham and Honorary Consultant Endocrinologist at University Hospital Birmingham, returning to Dublin to take up his current post in September 2019. He is widely published in the area of female androgen excess, has been the recipient of numerous awards for his research, and is regularly invited to lecture at a national and international level. He is a member of the Clinical Committee of the Society for Endocrinology in the UK. In February 2020 he received a HRB Emerging Clinician Scientist Award which will fund his research into the links between androgen excess and long term health consequences in women.


Beaumont Hospital

Jeanne Sutton

Jeanne Sutton was diagnosed with endometriosis in 2011. She recently joined the Endometriosis Association of Ireland (EAI) as a board member and graduated with a Science Communication MSc from Dublin City University (DCU) earlier this year, where she focused on illness memoirs written by women and their potential as science communication tools. She graduated from Law in Trinity College Dublin in 2012 and has a Graduate Certificate in European Law and Policy from DCU.

She has written about endometriosis and women’s health for Irish publications IMAGE, STELLAR, and The Gloss. Her essay ‘If Rabbits, Why Not Women?: Living in a Woman’s Body Shaped and Kept Together by the Inventions of Men’ appeared in the anthology So Hormonal: Essays About Our Hormones, which was published by Scottish publishers Monstrous Regiment this year. In 2019, alongside the EAI and other patient activists, she addressed members of the Oireachtas and their staff about the shortcomings in endometriosis care and outlined various opportunities for research and menstrual care derived from other countries’ experiences.

Her website is Learn more about the EAI at

Board Member.

Endometriosis Association of Ireland

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