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Professor Liz Lightbody

Professor of Stroke Care and Improvement, UK’s Deputy Director of the NIHR Global Health Research Group for Improving Stroke Care in India
School of Nursing

Liz’s contribution to the field of stroke and health services research has been outstanding. She has a national, and international research profile in applied health research, service improvement and implementation. Her research focuses on psychological adjustment, acute stroke care, workforce and global health research in stroke. Liz is one of only two UK nursing professors of stroke care. Her professorial position has an emphasis on developing and evaluating technology enhanced solutions, to provide more efficient and cost-effective care.

Liz’s Professorial appointment in stroke care and improvement is a joint clinical academic appointment with Lancashire Teaching Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust, reflecting her passion for improving the quality of stroke care through education and research.

She leads several programmes of work on awareness and management of psychological issues post-stroke, acute stroke care, end of life care and workforce development.

Liz has experience in managing, and leading, programmes of research. She has been a Chief Investigator (CI) on several studies. She is currently the CI on COnfirming the Mechanism of Motivational Interviewing Therapy after Stroke, which will recruit 1200 participants over 15 UK sites. and is co-CI on an NIHR programme development grant PREPARE: imPRoving End of life care Practice in stroke cARE.
Liz is also the UK’s Deputy Director of the NIHR Global Health Research Group for Improving Stroke Care in India at UCLan, where she has a leading role in shaping the strategic development of the programme and shared responsibility for the management and delivery.

She leads on several workforce development projects aimed at improving the quality of stroke care through tailored education and training. Neurovascular Education and Training in Stroke Management and Reperfusion Therapies (NETSMART) for acute care aims to improve acute stroke treatment outcomes by increasing the number of advanced practice nurses (APN) working in expanded roles to support acute stroke services. She chairs the Stroke Workforce task and finish group on End of Life Care as part of Health Education England’s Stroke Workforce Assurance Group. She also chairs the education sub-group which reports to Lancashire and South Cumbria Integrated Stroke Delivery Network and is past Chair of the National Stroke Nursing Forum.

She is involved in a range of other studies in stroke care including telemedicine, neurological monitoring, oral care and body image.

Liz has published in a range of journals including The New England Journal of Medicine, were she was a co-author on Cluster-Randomized, Crossover Trial of Head Positioning in Acute Stroke - HeadPost – the largest nursing RCT to-date, where she led the education and training.

  • PhD - University of Central Lancashire. Thesis title: Detecting Depression Following a Stroke
  • MPhil - University of Liverpool. Thesis title: Preventing Functional Decline and Further Falls: The Role of Psychological Factors
  • Bachelor Nursing (Hons) 2.1 - University of Liverpool
  • Registered General Nurse, NMC
  • PG Cert (Research Supervision)
  • SD2 qualification
  • ADOPTS shortlisted finalist for the North West Coast Research and Innovation Awards
  • Psychological adjustment – identification and management
  • Stroke assessment and management
  • Swallowing
  • End of life care
  • Telemedicine
  • Oral care
  • Body Image
  • Workstream lead End of Life Care – National Stroke Programme (2019 -date)
  • Steering group member Stroke Priority Setting Partnership, Stroke Association (2019-date)
  • Chair, National Stroke Nursing Forum (2016-2019)
  • Scientific Committee UK Stroke Forum (2016-2019)
  • Editorial/Advisory board, British Journal of Neuroscience Nursing (2016-date)
  • Fellow, Higher Education Academy (FHEA) (2013-to date)
  • National career framework for stroke nurses – project group (2019 -2020)
  • Member, American Heart Association (2013-to date)
  • Member, Society for Research in Rehabilitation (SRR) (1996-to date) -(past Member of Council)
  • Member, OPSYRIS (Organisation for Psychological Research into Stroke) (2008-to date)
  • Chair, Joint UK Stroke Nursing Staffing Guidelines (2015-2017)
  • Member, Lancashire Neuroscience Forum