Kay Mitchell is the Critical Care Senior Research Manager, NIHR Respiratory Biomedical Research Unit, based at University Hospital Southampton, UK. Kay is also a key member of the team organising medical research expeditions at the UCL Centre for Altitude Space and Extreme Environment (CASE) Medicine, based at the Institute of Sport, Exercise and Health. These expeditions have included the Caudwell Xtreme Everest expedition (2007) and Xtreme Everest 2 (2013). The expeditions involve using healthy volunteers to improve our understanding of the effects of hypoxia, and thus develop treatments to improve outcomes. In addition, Kay is interested in the factors that inhibit patients experiencing extreme difficulty in weaning from mechanical ventilators.
Kay is also the Acting Managing Director of the Centre for Nurse and Midwife led Research at UCL. This was set up in 2010 to develop research capacity and capability amongst nurses and midwives.
Kay studied at the Oxford School of Nursing before completing a BSc in Human Sciences at UCL. She then joined Midland Bank on a Graduate Management Programme, and worked as a Customer Services Manager at a large London branch. Since returning to nursing, Kay has worked as an Intensive Care nurse at UCLH, the Homerton hospital, and University Hospital Southampton, focusing on research, practice development and education. She completed her MSc in Adult Critical Care at Imperial College London in 2007. She is now based mainly in Southampton where she has recently registered for a PhD related to the epigenetic markers of hypoxia. Kay has presented around the world in relation to her work with Xtreme Everest, and has a growing number of publications.