Haematology

Share this item

I am Stuart Adams, Co-Chair of science4u, I work in a haematology lab.

In a typical laboratory in haematology you will have very routine work diagnosing common diseases and providing blood transfusion services. 

We also have very specialist areas of haematology particularly at my hospital which is Great Ormond Street Hospital.

Watch Stuart’s video to find out more…

Q&A with Susanne

What qualifications did you come out of school with?
I did my A levels in Germany.

What was your career pathway Susie?
When I first moved to England, I was employed as a Healthcare Technical Officer and later as a Senior Healthcare Technical Officer at the National Blood Service in Colindale. This was my first proper job.

After that,  I started working in the Haematology and Blood Transfusion department at St Mary’s Hospital as a Medical Laboratory Assistant where, two years later, I started my BSc in Applied Biomedical Science. In my third year of university I progressed to a Trainee Biomedical Scientist position. Following the completion of my BSc degree and HCPC registration I got a Biomedical Scientist Band 5 position and two years later I progressed to a Band 6 position, all within the same department at St Mary’s Hospital.  I started my MSc in Haematology in 2013 which took two years to complete.

In 2016, I left St Mary’s Hospital and went to work as a Specialist Biomedical Scientist in the Specialist Integrated Haematological and Malignancy Diagnostic Service (SIHMDS) at Great Ormond Street Hospital. In 2018, I became a Senior Specialist Biomedical Scientist within the same department and this is still my current role.

What qualifications do you have and how many years has it taken you in study?
The Bachelor degree (in Applied Biomedical Science) was a part-time course and took me 4 years to complete. The Master degree (in Haematology) was also a part-time course and took 2 years to complete.

Why did you choose to be a biomedical scientist?
It was a bit of an accident. I started to study Physics in Germany but I wasn’t very good at it and I dropped out of university. When I came to England, I knew I wanted to do something science-related, that’s when I came across the job at the National Blood Service in Colindale which didn’t require any special qualifications or prior experience. From then on my career just evolved in a very positive way.

What professional bodies are you affiliated to?
Health and Care Professions Council (HCPC) and Institute of Biomedical Science.

What do you like best about your job?
We are dealing with children who have very rare diseases. It is incredibly interesting to learn about these diseases including their symptoms and genetics. We perform various tests on the patients’ blood and bone marrow. The results are then used by the doctors to assess how sick the patients are and what treatment to give. This means that even though we actually never get to see the patients personally, we have a very significant impact on their treatment.

What do you like least?
It is very sad when one of our patients, some of whom we monitor for many years, passes away.  

Do you make a good living out of being a Biomedical Scientist?
You definitely do not work for the NHS is you want to make big bucks. But yes, in my current role I’m very happy and comfortable.

What fun things/interests do you do in your spare time?
I have a severe Netflix addiction, so I spend most of my time watching K-dramas. I do like to paint but don’t find much time for it. I also do kickboxing to keep me fit.

Could you have become a biomedical scientist without going to University?
No. The Bachelor degree is one of the requirements to obtain the professional HCPC registration. Without this registration I would not be allowed to call myself a Biomedical Scientist as it is a protected title and I would not be allowed to authorise any laboratory results or reports

Q&A with David

What qualifications did you come out of school with?
GCSE  O and A levels (Biology and Physics)

What was your career pathway?
After finishing University in  1984 (2i Honours Zoology) I spent several years doing “other jobs” and eventually took an MLA post at GOSH in 1995

I moved to a trainee MLSO post and then became State Registration 1998

In 2000 I moved to a research post at UCL/ICH for 14 years (surveillance of HIV in pregnant women using dried blood spots – tested over 2.5 million spots!) then returned to GOSH virology in 2014

What qualifications do you have and how many years has it taken you in study? 
I had to do a  years “top up” qualification at the University of Westminster to bridge my degree knowledge to the level required for State Registration

Why did you choose to be a biomedical scientist?
Biology was my favourite subject at school and I have always been very practical and hands on in all my interests. I love the concept of investigation and finding a result weather that be testing samples or validating a new test. 

What professional bodies are you affiliated to?
The IBMS and registered with the HCPC

What do you like best about your job?
The team work and the ability to make a difference to the patients treatment/outcome by careful/precise/thoughtful work

What do you like least?
It can be stressful at times, working to deadlines and having to deal with demanding hospital staff, an incorrect or missed result can have huge consequences for the patient and as a BMS I bear the burden of that consequence.  

Do you make a good living out of being a Biomedical Scientist?
Personally – yes, but that’s just my situation, I know many other BMS with families and mortgages etc who do struggle

What fun things/interests do you do in your spare time?
I have been a keen photographer for many years and find this a great escape from the stresses of the job. I combine this activity with my other passions of classic cars and motorsport.

Could you have become a biomedical scientist without going to University
Having a “biological degree” was a pre requisite for me becoming state registered

Please give us your feedback

There is a short Quiz incorporated into the Feedback form and the students providing the highest number of correct answers will be entered into a prize draw for a £50 Amazon voucher. Why not try your luck?

http://science4u.info/feedback-competition/


Share this item