Prestigious win for Newcastle Hospitals at national Healthcare Science Awards

A Biomedical Scientist at The Newcastle upon Tyne Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust picked up a prestigious national award last night (31 March 2014) at a special ceremony in London.

Mr Terry Coaker – based at the Royal Victoria Infirmary in Newcastle – picked up the accolade at the Healthcare Science Awards 2014.

The UK-wide awards recognise and reward professionals and innovative projects which make a real difference to the lives of patients. The awards ceremony, which is one of a series of events organised by the Chief Scientific Officer for England, is designed to celebrate Healthcare Science carried out by healthcare professionals.

Terry was presented with his award by Caroline Waterfield, head of employment services at NHS Employers and Professor Sue Hill OBE, the Chief Scientific Officer, in the Workforce Innovation category.

Terry's citation read:

“Terry has, in my opinion, accomplished more than any others in our biomedical and research field and is deserving of the Outstanding Service Innovators’ Award.

    "Terry has made enormous contributions towards the growth of biomedical science both in our service and nationally working at different levels at the UKNEQAS Schemes. He recently vacated his managerial post to research on the understanding and validation of most haematopathological diseases diagnosed within our service to help improve the services of both the Trust and the North-East region and apparently will benefit the nation at large.

    “He has also contributed immensely in advancing our technology. His latest design and advancement have virtually attracted colleagues, pathologists and other service users across the globe to tour our department. Currently he has opened a new research unit in our department paving way for biomedical growth and recognition in the healthcare service.  He has also established three Advanced Practitioners position in Histology which is rare within Histology in the UK. His quest for the recognition of biomedical science has motivated him to continue studying and contributing in numerous publications.

    “Terry has shown absolute dedication to the work of the Histology Centre of Excellence and put in endless hours in a determination to help humanity in its struggle against disease. He is a brilliant and dedicated scientist and humanitarian and a tribute to the profession.”The award was made following changes to existing staff roles at Newcastle Hospitals, which led to three Biomedical Scientist Advanced Practitioners working on histological dissection, and participating in the Royal College of Pathologists Reporting Pilot. 

Continuous improvement techniques were applied to this area of work, which also entailed employee involvement and using new technology to eliminate labelling errors. All of these techniques led to reduced turnaround times and improved quality in the service.

Mr Coaker said: “It is an honour for the work we do to be recognised by this award, which I accepted on behalf of our fantastic team in Cellular Pathology at Newcastle Hospitals.

“The competition within our category contained a range of excellent projects and competition was strong, so to come away with the top prize was really gratifying.”


More information about the Healthcare Science Awards 2014.

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