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Celebrating Healthcare Science at OUH

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Everyone knows the role of doctors and nurses in the NHS, but what about the clinical staff who work 'behind the scenes'?

Healthcare scientists at Oxford University Hospitals are promoting the many science careers and pathways available at the Trust as part of a national awareness week.

Representatives from different disciplines will inspire the next generation of healthcare scientists at our three Oxford hospitals during Healthcare Science Week (8-17 March 2019).

Activities aimed at students, staff and the general public, will be held over three days (15-17 March 2019) at the John Radcliffe Hospital, Churchill Hospital, and Nuffield Orthopaedic Centre (NOC).

Healthcare scientists cover life sciences, physiological sciences, clinical engineering, medical physics and bioinformatics. They support clinical staff through laboratory testing, research and innovation, and the development of new treatments and equipment to improve patient care.

Grace Barnard, a Genomics Healthcare Scientist trainee at the Trust, said: "Healthcare Science Week is a great opportunity to promote our profession and inspire the next generations of scientists who may well have never previously considered a career in healthcare.

"Not many patients are aware that we exist, and so we want to exhibit the impact healthcare scientists have on patient care, and how our role incorporates innovation and academia to provide the best patient-centred service."

In England, the NHS has around 50,000 healthcare scientists working in over 52 different specialties. Despite only making up five percent of the total workforce, healthcare scientists are involved in 80 percent of all clinical decisions and patient diagnoses.

A variety of these specialties will be represented on promotional stalls, including genomics, medical physics, blood sciences and rehabilitation scientists.

There will be a number of activities to demonstrate the types of work carried out by our healthcare scientists, and trainees on the NHS Scientists Training Programme (STP) will be on hand to explain their role and impact on patient care.

Various paper-based activities (such as 'guess the MR imaged chocolate bars'), an example of a radiotherapy mask and photomultiplier tube, and a miniature model of a linear accelerator will also be on show.

Other activities include a virtual reality headset about the immune system, a chromosome matching game, and a microscope showing human chromosomes.

Informative posters describing the types of testing performed and their clinical importance will be on display, along with videos highlighting what happens to a patient sample as it travels through a laboratory.

Events will take place:

Wednesday 13 March 2019 10.00am - 1.00pm
Level 2, opposite the League of Friends Café, John Radcliffe Hospital

Wednesday 13 March 2019 1.30pm - 4.00pm
Atrium, West Wing, John Radcliffe Hospital

Thursday 14 March 2019 10.00am - 4.00pm
Main Entrance, Churchill Hospital

Friday 15 March 2019 10.00am  - 4.00pm
Atrium, Nuffield Orthopaedic Centre