Professional background

Dr Najette Ayadi O’Donnell is currently a Consultant General Paediatrician with an interest in Adolescent health and complex safeguarding at UCLH. She is lead for health at ‘The Lighthouse’ the UK’s only Child House which supports children and young people who have experienced sexual abuse in North Central London.  She has had previous experience as a sexual offenses examiner.  

Her adolescent clinical work focuses on supporting young people with chronic fatigue syndrome, medically unexplained symptoms and functional neurological disorders as a consultant within the Treatment and rehabilitation of adolescents and children with complex conditions service (TRACCS) team at UCLH. She also manages general complex adolescent medicine cases. She is also a Consultant General Paediatrician and manages all manner of common paediatric conditions. As an EPALS instructor Najette trains staff on paediatric advanced life support.

Najette graduated from Imperial College London (2010) with a MBBS BSc (Hons) but also holds a BA(Hons) in Political Science from the University of Leeds (2004). She is a member of the Royal College of Paediatrics and Child Health (RCPCH) and Young People's Health Special Interest Group (YPHSIG). She has completed Specialist training in young persons health and child safeguarding and was awarded SPINs in both by the RCPCH.  

Najette was the first to be awarded the Michelle Zalkin scholarship at University College London (UCL) and has a MSc in Child Health (2021). Najette won the RCPCH Educational Supervisor of the year (PAFTA) in 2023. She is also London School of paediatrics college tutor at UCLH for the paediatric division as well as an educational supervisor.

Najette has co-ordinated and delivered various safeguarding and adolescent health courses in London/UK at RCPCH, RSM, RCEM and lectured undergraduates and postgraduates at UCL regularly. She is course co-organiser for the Child safeguarding module for the MSc programme at the Institute of Child Health at UCL. She is also interested in the use of SIM to train professionals on how to communicate with distressed adolescence Najette co-organised the RCPCH adolescent conference “re coming of age” in November 2022 and regularly supports and supervises undergraduates at UCL with their iBSc dissertation work.   


Research interests

Adolescent health, child sexual abuse, unmet health needs, trauma informed care, medically unexplained symptoms, chronic fatigue syndrome, functional neurological disorder, neurodiversity in young people.


  • Choudhury A, Segal TY, O’Donnell NA. 1845 ’Please write to Me’; How well are clinicians adhering to the guidance in writing to young people? 
    BMJ Paediatrics Open 2022;6:doi: 10.1136/bmjpo-2022-RCPCH.22 

  • Malik Bin Bali Mahomed N, Kumaralingam N, Rossana F, Ayadi O’Donnell N, Segal T et al (2022). First post-pandemic adolescent engagement event. BMJ Paediatrics
    Open 2022;6:doi: 10.1136/bmjpo-2022-RCPCH.49 

  • Lloyd-Williams O & Ayadi O’Donnell N (2022). Victim-Blaming: Assessing Doctors and Teachers’ Responses to Adolescent Sexual Assault Disclosures. Archives of Disease in Childhood 

  • Ayadi O’Donnell N & Monfrinoli A (2021). ‘The impact of COVID-19 on child sexual abuse referrals seen at an urban sexual assault referral centre’, Archives of Disease in Childhood 2021-Accepted for publication 

  • Hodes D, Ayadi O’Donnell N, Pall K, et al (2020). ‘Epidemiological surveillance study of female genital mutilation in the UK’, Archives of Disease in Childhood. Published Online First: 06 October 2020. doi: 10.1136/archdischild-2020-319569. 

  • Ayadi O’Donnell N, Alladi S, Battersby A et al (2020). ‘Where is the voice of the child in weighing the cost of this pandemic?’, BMJ. 2020;369:m1669. 

  • Ayadi O’Donnell N & Hodes D (2018). ‘Female Genital Mutilation’. Shaw M & Bailey S (editors) Justice for Children and Families. A developmental Perspective. p101-109, Cambridge University Press. 

  • Ayadi O’Donnell N, Leoni M, Debelle G, et al (2018). ‘Female genital mutilation surveillance in under 16 years olds in the UK and Ireland’. Archives of Disease in Childhood 2018;103:A58. 

  • Ayadi O’Donnell N, Pall K, Leoni M, et al (2018). ‘Female genital mutilation (FGM) surveillance in under 16 years olds in the UK and Ireland’. Archives of Disease in Childhood 2018;103:A201. 

  • Ayadi O’Donnell N, Wood B, Salter R & Maconochie I (2010). ‘The outcome of new referrals made by paediatric emergency medicine department to children’s Social Services and a survey of the feedback received afterwards’. Archives of Disease of Childhood. April, Vol 95, Supplement No.1 (A40-41).