Royal College of Nursing Representing nurses and nursing, promoting excellence in practice, shaping health policies

Meet the Team

More information about the forum's committee, including biographies and contact information

Dr Sue Woodward PhD, MSc, PGCEA, RN, FRCN

Forum Chair
Director of Clinical Education, Kings College London

Sue has worked within the field of neurosciences nursing almost exclusively since qualifying as a registered nurse in 1988. Since then she has worked in a number of regional neuroscience units around London and following the successful completion of an MSc in clinical neuroscience and post-graduate teaching qualification, Sue became a full-time lecturer at King's College London in 1999.

Sue has particular expertise in bladder and bowel care within neurosciences, as well as complementary therapies (having qualified as a reflexologist in 2003) and management of patients with long-term neurological conditions. She is the founding editor and Editor-in-Chief of the British Journal of Neuroscience Nursing, has co-edited the Oxford Handbook of Neuroscience Nursing and Neuroscience Nursing: evidence-based practice (2011) and was a member of the NICE Guideline Development Group for urinary incontinence in neurological disorders.

Email Sue or follow her on Twitter

Jan Clarke

Consultant Nurse for MND, National Hospital for Neurology & Neurosurgery

Jan has worked almost entirely in the field of neuroscience nursing since qualifying as a nurse in 1987. Initially as a neurology ward based nurse and then as unit manager of the neuro-intensive care unit at the National Hospital for Neurology & Neurosurgery (NHNN). In 2003 she took up the post as the clinical nurse specialist for Motor Neurone Disease (MND) at the same hospital. In June 2016 Jan was recruited to England’s first Nurse Consultant post for MND. The MND service at NHNN is now the largest consultant led MND service within the UK. 

Alongside neurological, ITU and management qualifications Jan has an MSc in palliative care from Kings College, London and has a specialist interest in advance care planning and home ventilation for this group of people. 

Jan joined the RCN Neuroscience Forum in January 2017 and is a keen advocate for nursing in this specialty to help improve the knowledge and standard of care delivered to people living with a neurological illness. Her aim is to see the forum proactively engage with student nurses in the future so that we inspire and secure highly motivated junior nurses to help take neuroscience nursing forward in the future.

Email Jan

Mark Madams - RCN Neuro Forum

Mark Madams

Head of Nursing for Neuroscience, Kings College Foundation Trust

Mark is Divisional Head of Nursing for Neurosciences at Kings College Hospital NHS Foundation Trust and has worked within the critical care, resuscitation and trauma field for 25 years. He is also represents nursing at the Kings Health Partners academic health sciences centre Neurosciences Leadership which is a partnership of Guys and St Thomas’s NHS Foundation Trust, Kings College Hospital NHS Foundation Trust, South London and Maudsley Mental Health NHS Trust and Kings College London.
Mark’s passion is realising the true value and specialist nature of Neuroscience nursing and developing advanced practice in clinical nursing. He is an active recent member of the National Neuroscience Benchmarking Group and an independent prescriber.
Mark is keen to support those undertaking research and publication and the implementation of evidenced based nursing care.
Mark’s experiences in neuro critical care, Neurosurgical, Neurology and stroke acute care have developed over many years in a variety of centres.
Mark is also passionate about equality, diversity and inclusivity in ward and department cultures and throughout the neuroscience workforce.
Email Mark

Debbie Quinn RCN Neuro Forum

Debbie Quinn

MS Specialist Nurse, Northamptonshire Healthcare NHS Foundation Trust

Debbie began working in the NHS in 1985 and has held a variety of roles, including 

ward sister in surgery and infection control, clinical audit facilitator and district nurse. She also gained some experience of working within industry as a welfare officer and occupational health nurse.

Debbie started working as a community MS specialist nurse in 2004, setting up the service and securing recurrent funds. She continues to champion community specialist nursing and the benefits of providing such a service. She is passionate about the demonstration of the need for MS nurses and has published articles on the cost benefits of her service. One of her greatest achievements was receiving the Queens Nurse award in 2012.

Debbie is also the nurse advisor for the MS Trust, representing over 250 MS nurses nationally. The role involves working with the Department of Health, NHS England and the RCN to ensure that MS nursing is at the forefront of delivery of care. She also assists with national conferences and MS specific study days to ensure that MS nurses receive the education, advice and support required to fulfil their roles.

Email Debbie

Ismalia De Souza - RCN Neuro Forum

Ismalia de Sousa, MSc RN

Clinical Nurse Specialist in Stroke, Imperial College Healthcare NHS Trust

Ismalia de Sousa is a clinical nurse specialist in stroke at Imperial College Healthcare NHS Trust, London. She qualified as a registered nurse in Portugal in 2009, after completing a four-year BSc in Nursing at Escola Superior de Enfermagem de Lisboa, including a 3 month clinical placement in Helsinki (Finland) as part of the ERASMUS European Exchange program. In the same year she moved to London and started working as a staff nurse in one of the newly set-up Hyper-Acute Stroke Units.

She completed her MSc in Neuroscience Care Advanced Practice at King’s College London in 2015, while piloting a nurse-led prevention clinic for stroke patients discharged home from the units. In her current role, Ismalia is involved in developing the emergency stroke pathway in the trust, including thrombolysis and thrombectomy pathway. As a CNS in stroke, she assesses patients with a potential diagnosis of stroke or TIA, and is also involved in service development, quality improvement, audit and benchmarking, and education of patients and families. The stroke specific workforce education ad development of nurses across the service is also part of her role. Monthly, Ismalia oversees the monthly stroke support group and stroke program in the hospital for patients, families and carers. 

Ismalia represents stroke nursing in the national Intercollegiate Stroke Working Party Group and co-chairs the National Senior Nurse Thrombectomy group. She has published and is a member of the editorial board of the British Journal of Neuroscience Nursing. Ismalia joined the forum committee in 2015 to improve patient care and raise the profile of stroke nurses across the country.

Vicky Queen

Professional Lead & Deputy Director of Patient Care Rowcroft Hospice, Torquay, Devon.

Vicky previously worked as an acute Parkinson’s disease nurse specialist at Torbay and South Devon Foundation Trust. But since January 2019 has been the professional lead and deputy director of patient care at Rowcroft hospice. She holds a BSc Specialist Practitioner Qualification in District Nursing, a Diploma in Parkinson’s disease. She is a non-medical prescriber and holds an independent prescriber qualification. In 2014 she became a Queen’s Nurse and also became the lead Queen’s Nurse for the South West.

 Predominantly her nursing career has been community based in Cornwall, Southampton, Winchester and Devon. She worked as the sole Parkinson’s disease nurse specialist for Southampton City between 2004 and 2011 where she set up the nurse service. In 2011 she took on a more managerial role and became the community nurse manager for the moorlands of Dartmoor. Vicky then secured a senior position in the trust as the project management lead for nursing where she undertook a redesign and implementation of the out of hours nursing and rapid response teams. She also implemented 24 hour working for community nursing in Southern Devon.

 In 2014 Vicky became head of nursing for Torbay and Southern Devon Care Trust, and non-medical prescribing lead. Within this role she was able to restructure the non-medical prescribing support programme for nurses and health visitors, along with many other aspects. In 2015 she was appointed as the acute Parkinson’s disease nurse specialist for the trust. Vicky is passionate about high quality nursing care and has been fortunate to have talked and lectured on this topic, prescribing and Parkinson’s disease at local and national level, including RCN Congress. Vicky was delighted to get her current job at Rowcroft hospice in January 2019, she really viewed this post as a dream come true. Within this role she works both strategically and clinically, continuing to have a specialist area of Parkinson’s and neurological disorders in end of life care.

Email Vicky.


Professional Lead: Amanda Cheesley

Follow the forum on Twitter- @NeuroNurseForum

Page last updated - 16/08/2019