Dr Suzanne Staples: 2018 Cum Laude Award

Research Clinician & Principal Investigator: Tuberculosis & HIV Investigative Network (THINK)

Educational Background:

  • Master of Philosophy: University of Stellenbosch (2017)

  • Bachelor of Medicine, Bachelor of Surgery: University of the Free State (2008)

Dr Suzanne Staples is a dedicated medical doctor and is the Principal Investigator at the Tuberculosis & HIV Investigative Network (THINK). After completing her qualification at the University of the Free State, she was exposed to the reality of the TB and HIV epidemics while working in hospitals in various parts of the country, eventually ending up in Durban at the Medical Department of McCord Mission Hospital. There she became involved in clinical research with KwaZulu-Natal Research Institute for Tuberculosis and HIV (K-RITH), and from 2013 with THINK where she dedicated her medical career to the improvement of care for patients.

As one of THINK’s first staff members, Dr Staples has helped manage and develop the organisation from a small organisation with six employees to a renowned organisation that has conducted more than ten international trials over four research sites.

Wanting to understand the communities she works in better and the impact of her research, she pursued a Masters degree in Transdisciplinary Health and Development studies from Stellenbosch University in 2017.

In 2017, Dr Staples was selected as a candidate for a one-year EDCTP-WHO fellowship, funded by the European Union, to strengthen the research capabilities in Africa by placing African scientists at European institutions. She has completed the fellowship and is working on her reintegration projects, one of which is to start up an African Research Network.

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