Dr Islay McCormick

Associate Professor

United Kingdom

I am an Associate Professor in Disability and Global Eye Health working across the International Centre for Evidence in Disability (ICED) and the International Centre for Eye Health (ICEH) at LSHTM.

The overall objective of my research is to support equality of opportunity for people with disabilities and impairments through collection of robust population data on prevalence and aetiology, and inequalities in access to services experienced by these groups. I have a particular interest in strengthening the quality and useability of data, capitalising on digital tools and supporting the capacity of stakeholders to interpret data and statistics to create meaningful change.

I currently lead the development of the Rapid Assessment of Avoidable Blindness (RAAB) survey methodology, repository and community at ICEH, which is a multi-year project with Peek Vision to rebuild RAAB as an end-to-end digital and cloud-based survey solution.

I am also currently working on the development and adaptation of tools to assess and improve the accessibility of primary health facilities for people with disabilities, both in a pilot study in Luuka, Uganda, and with the Missing Billion initiative.


Department of Clinical Research
Faculty of Infectious and Tropical Diseases


I am co-module organizer of the MSc module Epidemiological Methods applied to Eye Diseases.

I also teach on the following MSc modules:

- Global Disability and Health

- Research Skills for Field Research

- Non Communicable Eye Diseases

I am co-supervisor of Tila Mainga, a Zambart/LSHTM PhD student focused on TB and mental health, and Stephene Maende, a University of Nairobi/LSHTM PhD student focused on the impact of COVID-19 on people with disabilities in Kenya.


Alongside various research design, training and data analysis consulting roles, I have coordinated a number of international disability and eye health research projects at ICED/ICEH including:

- 2017 - present Rapid Assessment of Avoidable Blindness Version 7 Project

- 2022 - present pilot testing a tool to assess and improve the accessibility of primary health facilities for people with disabilities in Luuka,


- 2019 Gambia National Eye Health Survey

- 2019 Water, Women and WASH Survey in Vanuatu

- 2016 National Survey of Disability in Guatemala

- 2015-2016 Measuring the Impact of Physical Rehabilitation Project in Myanmar

- 2013-2014 Building the Evidence Base in Disability Project: Cameroon and India

- 2011-2012 The Child Disability Key Informant Project: Bangladesh and Pakistan

In 2018, I completed a Staff PhD based on my work on disability measurement - in particular the relationship between clinical impairment screening and reported activity limitations in population-based surveys.

Research Area
Social epidemiology
Mixed methods research
Research methodology
Disease and Health Conditions
Adults with disabilities
Children with disabilities
Hearing impairment
Eye health
Sierra Leone

Selected Publications

Blood pressure and the hypertension care cascade in The Gambia: Findings from a nationwide survey.
Jobe, M; Mactaggart, I; Hydara, A; Kim, MJ; Bell, S; Kotanmi, GB; Badjie, O; Prentice, AM; Burton, MJ;
Journal of clinical hypertension (Greenwich, Conn.)
The Rapid Assessment of Avoidable Blindness survey: Review of the methodology and protocol for the seventh version (RAAB7)
MCCORMICK, I; BUTCHER, R; RAMKE, J; Bolster, NM; Limburg, H; Chroston, H; Bastawrous, A; BURTON, MJ; MACTAGGART, I;
Wellcome Open Research
Prevalence of hypertension, diabetes, obesity, multimorbidity, and related risk factors among adult Gambians: a cross-sectional nationwide study.
JOBE, M; MACTAGGART, I; Bell, S; Kim, MJ; Hydara, A; BASCARAN, C; Njai, M; Badjie, O; PEREL, P; Prentice, AM; BURTON, MJ;
The Lancet. Global health
Evaluating the hypertension care cascade in middle-aged and older adults in The Gambia: findings from a nationwide survey.
JOBE, M; MACTAGGART, I; Hydara, A; KIM, MJ; Bell, S; Badjie, O; Bittaye, M; PEREL, P; PRENTICE, AM; BURTON, MJ;
Socioeconomic position and eye health outcomes: identifying inequality in rapid population-based surveys
MCCORMICK, I; KIM, MJ; Hydara, A; Olaniyan, SI; JOBE, M; Badjie, O; Sanyang, NM B; Jarju, G; Njai, M; Sankareh, A; BASTAWROUS, A; ALLEN, L; MACTAGGART, I; BURTON, MJ; RAMKE, J;
BMJ Open
Effective cataract surgical coverage in adults aged 50 years and older: estimates from population-based surveys in 55 countries.
MCCORMICK, I; BUTCHER, R; EVANS, JR; MACTAGGART, IZ; Limburg, H; Jolley, E; Sapkota, YD; Oye, JE; Mishra, SK; BASTAWROUS, A; Furtado, JM; Joshi, A; Xiao, B; Ravilla, TD; Bourne, RR A; Cieza, A; Keel, S; BURTON, MJ; RAMKE, J; RAAB International Co-Author Group,;
Lancet global health
A School Eye Health Rapid Assessment (SEHRA) planning tool: Module to survey the magnitude and nature of local needs.
MORJARIA, P; Massie, J; BASTAWROUS, A; SEHRA Author Group,;
BMC public health
Anxiety and depression in Guatemala: Sociodemographic characteristics and service access.
Naber, J; MACTAGGART, I; Dionicio, C; POLACK, S;
PLoS One
Additional file 1 of Qualitative study of patient experiences of mental distress during TB investigation and treatment in Zambia
Mainga, T; Gondwe, M; MACTAGGART, I; Stewart, RC; Shanaube, K; AYLES, H; BOND, V;
Qualitative study of patient experiences of mental distress during TB investigation and treatment in Zambia.
Mainga, T; Gondwe, M; MACTAGGART, I; Stewart, RC; Shanaube, K; AYLES, H; BOND, V;
BMC Psychology
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