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London Healthcare Science Trainee Network holds Welcome Event

A welcome event has been held to celebbrate the establishment of the London Healthcare Science Trainee Network, bringing together everyone on PTP and STP training across the capital

LSTN welcome event

Although each of the 52 specialities within Healthcare Science (HCS) have their own professional networks; trainees who are part of the Modernising Scientific Careers framework of learning (PTP and STP trainees) in London had no formal support structure.

In 2014/2015 Health Education North Central and East London (HENCEL) recruited a Darzi Fellow to develop a pan – London network for all trainees across the different scientific disciplines, linking to national networks where appropriate. The network has been successfully formed with a group of eager, enthusiastic, trainees who will support each other and promote and champion HCS.  The network will enable HENCEL to scope work-based learning support within all HCS services across London and facilitate the national work-based learning quality assurance framework across the geography.

To celebrate the development of the London network and network board, trainees held a Welcome Event at the end of September to showcase the network, share its aim to support trainees, and welcome trainees to the network. The event was attended by over 50 trainees, both undergraduates on the Practitioner Training Programme (PTPs) and postgraduate Scientist Training Programme trainees (STPs), and their trainers. Attendees were from a variety of disciplines, including audiology, biochemistry, bioinformatics and medical physics.

“It was really interesting having discussions with other trainees, gaining insights into other disciplines and sharing experiences”

 STP Trainee

LSTN event

Guest speakers Gary Dakin (Healthcare Science and AHP lead) and Aarti Makan (Professional advisor for Healthcare Science) from HENCEL discussed their roles in commissioning and supporting training, and the importance of establishing a London network for trainees. Kerry Tinkler (Director of Standards at Academy of Healthcare Science, AHCS) and Ruth Thomsen (Scientific Director, NHS England, London) also gave presentations on the role of the AHCS in regulating and registering scientists, promoting Healthcare Science, and the need for improving quality and patient services in the NHS. All expressed their support and interest in the London network, and emphasised the importance of networks within healthcare.

“I was inspired by this event, and would be interested in a network for trainers”

Trainer 

picture of LSTN plenary

The event included breakout sessions for trainers, STPs and PTPs, in which attendees were able to share their ideas for the network. It was widely agreed that the network would be of great benefit in developing trainees’ professional practise skills, and a useful platform to showcase their disciplines and training experiences, including research projects and interesting cases. Trainers were also enthusiastic about the network, and felt it would assist in arranging training placements.

 “Being able to discuss the training together with the trainers was very useful”

 PTP Trainee

There were several networking opportunities at the event, which trainee feedback rated highly. The event highlighted an interest amongst trainees in learning about the roles of different HCS disciplines in patient care, and to widen training opportunities across all hospitals in London.

The network board has now established an NHS Network, a Facebook group and twitter account (@LondonHCSTN) for members to keep in touch, are now working on the Winter event for HCS trainees.

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