It is with great sadness we share the news that former researcher and alumna Dr Jeshika Singh has passed away suddenly from a brain aneurysm
Jeshika joined Brunel in 2009 as a researcher at the Health Economics Research Group (HERG). All those blessed to know the extraordinarily warm-hearted, talented and good-natured Jes universally held her in such high esteem. Her radiant smile could brighten the dullest of days.
After completing a Business and Economics degree at Aston University in 2006, she returned to Nepal to work on a National Vitamin A Programme in Kathmandu. Back in the UK, an MSc in Health Economics at the University of York, was followed by her HERG appointment, which Jes described with typically good-humoured modesty. She was interviewed for two posts, the one at HERG, and one as a shop sales assistant. She recalled that when she saw she had an official-looking communication she initially assumed she had been appointed as the sales assistant.
Jes formed many strong and supportive friendships, including with JiHee Youn who started at HERG on the same day. Jes was fully engaged in the research group's social and communal academic activities and responsibilities, including for some years efficiently coordinating the HERG lunchtime external seminar series. She was extremely popular, both with colleagues and as a member of the faculty on the HERG Short Course on Economic Evaluation in Healthcare.
She started a part-time PhD, and in 2013 became a Research Fellow at HERG. In 2016, she received an Award from Brunel's Research Institutes related to her research grant from the EuroQol Research Foundation. Jes began to play an increasing role in EuroQol, an international network of multidisciplinary researchers with a focus on the development of instruments that describe and value health outside the for-profit model. She also worked on cost effectiveness analyses alongside clinical trials in leading hospitals. Senior medical academics were always pleased to work with Jes.
Jes received her PhD from Brunel in July 2018 for her thesis entitled, Development of a descriptive system for patient experience: an investigation of methods. The photo below shows Jes at the HERG doctoral graduation party she shared with colleague Dr Teresa Jones. Jes had her proud parents either side of her, and was surrounded by just some of her many friends and colleagues.
In 2017, Jes left Brunel to join PHMR Ltd, a health economics consultancy, as a Senior Health Economics and Outcomes Analyst. There Jes worked with Louise Longworth, who had earlier supervised some of her research at HERG. Jes took on her new role and responsibilities with enthusiasm and quickly became a highly valued member of the PHMR team and developed many close friendships with colleagues. She continued her passion for research on the measurement and valuation of health, leading large, often multinational, projects and enjoying publishing her research. Clients valued her calm and thoughtful approach and junior colleagues appreciated her line-management and mentorship. Such was the quality of her work that she was promoted to Principal Health Economist and Outcomes Researcher in June 2019, on what turned out to be the day before her brain aneurysm. She was just 35.
Louise said: "Jes was smart, warm and talented, with a bright future. She was busy developing ideas and plans to further her research at PHMR. I feel privileged to have had the opportunity to work closely with Jes throughout her career and watch her develop into an independent researcher who took great pleasure in training and passing her knowledge on to others. We will remember Jes with love as a great friend and colleague."
Jes regularly used a gym and thoroughly enjoyed life in London with her wide-circle of friends. She also always maintained the strongest of links with her family in Nepal, and relations who had moved to the UK. She was always concerned that things should be for the best for her relatives, and returned whenever possible to enjoy time with her family in Kathmandu.
Jeshika will be so greatly missed by her family. And also by her many colleagues and friends – especially by her devoted boyfriend, Pranoy Das.
It is hoped to recognise Jeshika's career by creating one or more prizes or awards to be named in her honour. When arrangements are finalised, HERG will share details for those who might wish to donate to the fund.
+44 (0)1895 266012 Gillian.Trevethan@brunel.ac.uk