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HomeAcademic staffDr Suzanne Bench
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I am Professor of Critical Care Nursing at LSBU and Director of Nursing (Research) at Guys and St Thomas' NHS Foundation Trust.

Completed PhD at King’s College London in 2014, and a post-doctoral fellowship in Improvement Science; joined School of Health and Social Care in 2017.

Research interests centre on critical illness recovery. Currently leading two UK research programmes; critical illness fatigue and Rehabilitation after COVID-19 critical illness.

National roles: Chair of United Kingdom Critical Care Nursing Alliance (2020-2022); executive member of British Association of Critical Care Nurses and UK Critical Care Research Group.

I am a Professor of Critical Care Nursing; a clinical-academic nurse combining practice, education and research. In my role as Director of Nursing for research at Guys & St Thomas' NHS Trust, I am responsible for leading A Centre Of Research for Nurses and Midwives(ACORN@gstt)set up to support nurses and midwives' engagement in research across the Trust. I also spend one day a week in critical care to maintain my own clinical competence.

I completed my PhD in Nursing at King’s College London in 2014, and my post-doctoral fellowship in Improvement Science with the NIHR CLAHRC South London in 2015. I joined the School of Health and Social Care at LSBU from King’s College, London in 2017, teaching intensive care and research methods, and supporting students on PhD and Professional Doctorate programmes. I am co-editor of a critical care nursing textbook, associate editor for Intensive and Critical Care Nursing (Elsevier) and have published widely on nursing issues related to critical care.

My research interests centre on the care and management of patients and families following critical illness, with a focus on information provision and shared decision making. Improvement science methods and patient and public involvement and engagement are integral to my research. I have co-designed and evaluated critical care discharge information resources with former ICU patients and have published research on how best to involve former ICU patients in research and quality improvement. I am currently involved in two collaborative UK programmes of work; one focused on assessing and managing fatigue after critical illness (F-ACT) and the second exploring future critical care nursing workforce models (SEISMIC-R).

My National roles include: Chair of the United Kingdom Critical Care Nursing Alliance (UKCCNA) 2020-22; executive board member of the British Association of Critical Care Nurses (BACCN) and nursing representative on the UK Critical Care Research Group (UKCCRG).

I was part of the delivery and assurance group for the London Transformation and Learning Collaborative; developing a revised qualification in specialism module for critical care nursing and just in time training for non-critical care staff following the COVID-19 pandemic response.

In 2019-2022, I was part of the first NIHR 70@70 senior nurse research leader programme, which helped shape the National strategy for developing future clinical academic nurses. I am currently a member of the NHSE transformation steering group for this work.

PhD Nursing

King's College, London

MSc Advanced Practice (Critical Care) (Distinction)

King's College London

PG Diploma Higher Education (Nurse teacher registered with NMC)

University of Greenwich

BSc Nursing Studies (First class)

City University

Diploma in Health Studies

University East London

Post doctoral Fellowship in improvement science

NIHR South London CLAHRC (Kings College London and King's College Hospital NGS Trust)

Registered General Nurse

North Middlesex Hospital

Intensive Care Nursing (ENB 100)

Whipps Cross Hospital

Teaching and Assessing in clinical practice (ENB 998)

City University

Advanced Life Support Instructor

Resuscitation Council UK

Lecturer in Critical Care Nursing
King's College, London

Royal College of Nursing
Intensive Care Society
British Association of Critical Care Nurses
Intensive Care Society

Associate editor
University of Hull
External examiner

MSc Critical care

September 2018
September 2022
Royal National Orthopaedic Hospital NHS Trust

Deputy Director of Research (Nursing)

April 2017
University College London Hospitals

Honorary consultant nurse in critical care

Non-education public sector
September 2019
Beckton Dickinson Life Sciences

European POCT Scientific Advisory Board

September 2018
August 2022
Prizes, awards, and accolades

International travel scholarship (Dec 2019)

Florence Nightingale Foundation

The Florence Nightingale Foundation provides funding to scholars who travel to study new models of care, patient safety and quality improvement. Scholars will bring back evidence to improve patient care and health outcomes.

NIHR 70/70 senior nurse research leadership programme (Apr 2019)


The 70@70 programme (funded by DHSC, through the NIHR) is aimed at senior nurse and midwife clinical leaders with demonstrable experience of building a research-led care environment for patients and who have a record of developing existing practice, working within and contributing to a research rich environment.

Contribution to research and collaboration (Jul 2018)


Head of department award

Most active post-doctoral researcher (Jul 2015)

NIHR CAHRC South London

The annual event is designed to bring together people working with the CLAHRC, to celebrate the achievements of our research teams and to share good practice.

Bursary (accommodation/travel) place on Emerging Scholars Forum, University of Toronto, Canada. (Oct 2014)

University of Toronto

The Lawrence S. Bloomberg Faculty of Nursing Huffman Splane Emerging Scholars Forum supports early career development and international networking of emerging nursing scholars who are embarking on a research focused career. The Huffman Splane Emerging Nurse Scholars Forum is supported by a generous endowment from Dr. Verna Huffman Splane, a pioneer in nursing in Canada who held a deep conviction that nurses should be taught that they are part of a global profession. Bloomberg Nursing is widely recognized as a research-intensive environment that promotes education and scholarship in nursing.

Selected through a peer review application process, participants will be invited to present their doctoral/postdoctoral research to peers and faculty. Preference will be given to applicants whose research and academic interests focus on public health (the health of individuals, groups or populations), health systems and/or improvement of care/outcomes. Participants will have the opportunity to meet with nurse researchers who have established successful careers in nursing science. During the Forum, Bloomberg faculty will lead discussion sessions and speak on the successful development of an academic career.

The Clinical Teacher’s IMPACT (Improving Practitioners as Clinical Teachers) Award (Jul 2014)

The Clinical Teacher

The Clinical Teacher is the journal for clinicians who teach and people who are involved in education in a health care setting.

Young scientist of the year (May 2013)

European Federation of Critical Care Nurses

The European Federation of Critical Care Nursing Associations (EfCCNa) is a formal network of critical care nursing associations in Europe.

Founded in 1999 it currently has 31 national member associations that represent approximately 25.000 European critical care nurses.

2019, during the 8th EfCCNa Congress in Ljubljana, Slovenia EfCCNa celebrated its 20 jubilee with all attending members of the federation.

Since its inception the mission of the federation has been clear: to promote collaboration and equity among the national critical care member associations in order to improve nursing care of critically ill patients and their families.

EfCCNa provides a unique opportunity for European critical care nurses working as equal partners on the advancement of European critical care practice, education, management and research.

EfCCNa - the powerful and collective voice of critical care nurses in Europe.

International travel fellowship (May 2010)

Intensive and critical care nursing

To attend Efccna in Europe

Marjorie Simpson new researcher award (May 2010)

Royal College of Nursing

The Marjorie Simpson award annually recognises excellence in three new researchers who are involved in post-graduate research.

Doctoral fellowship (Oct 2009)

Florence Nightingale School of Nursing & Midwifery

4 year 0.5 WTE to undertake doctoral study

Filter publications

Research behind a webcam: an exploration of virtual interviewing with children and young people.
Bench, S. (2022). Research behind a webcam: an exploration of virtual interviewing with children and young people. Nurse Researcher.

‘Doing the best we can’: Registered Nurses' experiences and perceptions of patient safety in intensive care during COVID-19
Stayt, L.C., Merriman, C., Bench, S., Price, A.M., Vollam, S., Walthall, H., Credland, N., Gerber, K. and Calovski, V. (2022). ‘Doing the best we can’: Registered Nurses' experiences and perceptions of patient safety in intensive care during COVID-19. Journal of Advanced Nursing. 78 (10), pp. 3371-3384.

Patients’ perspectives of recovery after COVID-19 critical illness; an interview study
Bench, S., Thomas, N. and James, A. (2022). Patients’ perspectives of recovery after COVID-19 critical illness; an interview study. Nursing in Critical Care.