Scott Bentley, Carnall Farrar

Thought Leader Consultant of the Year

On Sunday 16th August my work gained national news coverage just below the fold of the Sunday Times with a story long in coming about the unfortunate toll that COVID had taken on cancer patients. It highlighted the potential of 3,600-7,200 excess deaths that may occur as a result. How did we get here?

First a need was identified. COVID was still a hot topic, but limited work had been done to understand the potential impact outside of those with the virus. Questions were beginning to be asked about cancer, but a full investigation was yet to be done. I led a team of experts including the former national cancer director, Professor Sir Mike Richards, and an internal team. The expert input shaped the overall story, which was supplemented by descriptive analyses that demonstrated the impact observed so far. Modelling then looked at the potential impact in future years, putting survival rates back between 5-11 years. The Institute for Public Policy Research lined up press coverage, which culminated with a front-page splash in the Sunday Times, and subsequently picked up by 3 more newspapers the following day. Our work was used by was used by the chair of the Health Select committee Jeremy Hunt, in scrutiny of the Secretary of State’s work.

This approach, which focuses on understanding the audience, problem solving, analysis and a partner driving media interest has allowed me to publish ~10 articles in the past year, whilst simultaneously selling and delivering considerable client work.