Healthcare Science refers to the prevention, diagnosis, treatment and rehabilitation of a number of medical conditions.
There are 4 broad categories of healthcare science including:
- Life Sciences
- Physiological Sciences
- Physical Sciences and Biomedical Engineering
- Bioinformatics Healthcare- this is a vital part of the NHS and plays an important role in devising new treatments to help save lives and improve care for millions of patients. Rapid developments in technology mean this is now one of the most exciting, challenging and rewarding areas of healthcare. This is recognised in the NHS Five Year Forward View and in particular, the implications of providing 7-day working.
Healthcare science covers some 48 different professions spread throughout all areas of the NHS. At SaTH we have healthcare scientists working in Audiology, Cardiorespiratory, Medical Physics, Fertility, Pathology, Medical Engineering, Maxillo-Facial, Phlebotomy, Mortuary, the Renal Unit and Medical Illustration, to name but a few.
Healthcare scientists work at all levels in the NHS, helping to support clinical services and teams at Associate and Practitioner levels, using their expertise to develop new processes and techniques and deliver cutting edge treatments as Clinical Scientists and ultimately leading departments and strategically influencing healthcare in their field at Consultant Healthcare Scientist level. For more information about this you can view our Healthcare Science Career Structure document.
Everything healthcare science staff do supports and improves patient care. Their unique contribution of bringing cutting edge science to patient services should be celebrated across the NHS during National Healthcare Science Week. Healthcare science staff are crucial for the delivery of patient care and they are involved in 80% of all clinical decisions and diagnoses in the NHS, they also develop amazing new treatments and techniques to benefit patients, lead research and drive innovation.
There is a national drive, led by the Chief Scientific Officer to see Healthcare Scientists utilised as broadly as possible to help to ensure that patients receive the very highest standards of care from a diverse and expert workforce and at SaTH we are looking at ways to introduce healthcare scientists in new areas to complement teams and help to improve patient care.
Healthcare scientists can bring their technological and clinical expertise to a wide range of professions without detracting from the already high standards of care being given up and down the country. Whilst not all of the roles have patient contact they all make a difference to our patients in a variety of ways. Many are unsung heroes working behind the scenes and this week is a chance to shine the light on their excellent work.