Makerere University, Kampala, Uganda
Professor Downing is an experienced palliative care nurse, educationalist and researcher, with a PhD that evaluated palliative care training in rural Uganda. She has been working within palliative care for 27 years, with eighteen of those working internationally in low and middle income countries, including in Uganda, across Africa, Eastern Europe and throughout the world developing palliative care services for adults and children. She is recognised as a global leader and expert in the field of palliative care development in low and middle income countries, speaking and sharing regularly on this topic. She is also passionate about developing leaders, particularly nurses, and hopes to train and empower leaders around the world.
She is the Chief Executive of the International Children’s Palliative Care Network (ICPCN), an Honorary Professor at Makerere University, Kampala, a Visiting Professor at the University of Belgrade in Serbia, Edge Hill University and the University of South Wales, and an honorary senior research fellow at the Cicely Saunders Institute, King’s College London. She has extensive experience in research, presenting at conferences and writing for publication. She has a wide variety of research interests related to palliative care such as development of PC, Paediatric PC, Evaluating interventions, Patient Report Outcome Measures, Models of care, Education research, teaching research, and leadership.
Professor Downing serves on the Boards of several NGOs including the Worldwide Hospice and Palliative Care Alliance, the International Association of Hospice and Palliative Care, Hospice in the Weald, the African Palliative Care Association UK, and the Palliative Care Research Society. She was the recipient of the IJPN’s Development Award in 2006, the Robert Tiffany lectureship from the ISNCC in 2014 and the Pearl Moore “Making a Difference” International Award for Contributions to Cancer Care from the Oncology Nursing Society in 2015. She was also recognised as a leading change agent in oncology in the ‘Women as Change Agents’ publication for International Women’s Day in 2016.