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News Free training to support retired scientists returning to COVID-19 frontline

Staffordshire University has created online training for retired Biomedical Scientists returning to the NHS in response to the COVID-19 pandemic

The online course will help prepare Biomedical Scientists returning from retirement
Image: The online course will help prepare Biomedical Scientists returning from retirement

The unprecedented circumstances surrounding this pandemic mean that the job that they are returning to is probably very different from the one they retired from – this course brings them up to speed with some of these challenges.

Ian Davies, Senior Lecturer in Biological and Biomedical Science

Ian Davies, Senior Lecturer in Biological and Biomedical Science, developed the COVID Return to Practice course in conjunction with the Institute of Biomedical Science, the professional body representing Biomedical Scientists across the UK.

Biomedical Scientists are at the centre of the diagnostic response to COVID-19, carrying out tests for the virus and supporting the treatment and monitoring of patients by performing laboratory tests. They are also heavily involved in developing and verifying new tests to make sure that they are sensitive enough for clinical practice.

Recently 75 of Staffordshire University’s degree apprentices, all training to become Biomedical Scientists, joined the frontline to help to ramp up COVID-19 testing.

As part of the UK Government’s emergency COVID-19 legislation, the Health and Care Professions Council (HCPC), the UK regulator of 15 healthcare professions including Biomedical Scientists, launched a temporary register to allow retired staff to return to practice to support the pandemic response.

Staffordshire University’s new online training package guides staff returning to practice through their regulatory responsibilities, ensuring they and their patients are protected from harm.

Ian commented: “The response to this pandemic from the Biomedical Science community has been fantastic, and more and more experienced staff are offering to return from retirement to support their colleagues.

“The unprecedented circumstances surrounding this pandemic mean that the job that they are returning to is probably very different from the one they retired from – this course brings them up to speed with some of these challenges, for example new testing methods, operating with personal protective equipment, and helping their colleagues to change their scopes of practice.

“It also provides them with support for their own mental health and wellbeing, and how to use their experience to lead newer members of their teams.”

The course material is freely available online at http:blogs.staffs.ac.uk/ConnectedPathology

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