Healthcare Science Week

Healthcare Science Week takes place from 11th - 15th March 2024. 

It is a fantastic opportunity to celebrate the diverse careers in healthcare science, as well as recognising the outstanding work of our teams here at SaTH.

Science and technology are vital in providing modern patient care and can change lives for the better.

There are over 50 different specialisms in healthcare science, and range from working in laboratories and directly with patients to assess and diagnose disease and illness, to data and technology experts who improve systems that benefit patients.

At SaTH we have a team of over 350 healthcare science staff. Their work includes developing cancer treatments, helping to create families through fertility services, diagnosing what is making a patient ill, repairing vital medical equipment such as kidney dialysis machines, and treating patients with heart and respiratory problems.

Meet some of our Healthcare Scientists:

Samantha Bunn, Maxillofacial Prosthetist

A person in blue scrubs sitting at a table

Samantha Bunn is a Maxillofacial Prosthetist also known as a Reconstructive Healthcare Scientist - a role which falls under a branch of clinical healthcare science that deals with the specialist rehabilitation of patients requiring treatment after a traumatic injury, cancer surgery or defects from birth causing malformation. This can involve the making of prosthetic ears, eyes and noses, through to Virtual Surgical Planning and implant design. 

Sam said “I joined the trust as an Orthodontic Technician in 1995, then undertook advanced training for a further 3 years in Maxillofacial Prosthetics. I became the Laboratory Manager in 2007 and now the Department has almost doubled in size since I started. In 2019, we were successful in setting up a surgical planning and 3d printing service for the Head and Neck Centre. This allows us to plan and treat all oncology and complex trauma Head and Neck patients that come through our Departments."

“As a laboratory we provide a wide range of clinical and technical services to both the Trust, and external users. We work in conjunction with many departments and receive many in-house referrals, such as Radiotherapy, Audiology and Dermatology, to name a few. 

“What I like most about working in the Maxillofacial Department is how it combines science, art, and working with patients. I always wanted to have a creative job – and seeing the confidence a new prosthesis can give to a patient is extremely rewarding."

“I would wholeheartedly recommend this profession. There are opportunities to train within a hospital setting. It is hard work, requires patience, precision, empathy and a practical mind but it is thoroughly rewarding.”

Marion Tench, Medical Device Training Officer

Women standing by a wall, wearing a grey suit

Marion Tench is the Medical Device Training Officer to the Trust. Marion's career has taken her all over the world. She started by studying with the department of Clinical Physics and Biomedical Engineering in Glasgow. Her list of qualifications includes a HNC in Physics, Electronics, BSc Hons in Physics, PGCE, to name a few. She has worked in Glasgow, Saudi Arabia and Shrewsbury, and also taught the International Baccalaureate whilst living abroad. Marion works at The Royal Shrewsbury Hospital (RSH), The Princess Royal Hospital, Telford (PRH) and also in the community.

Marion has combined her passion for the sciences with a love of teaching, and advises getting the right qualifications in Science, English and Maths, for anyone interested in a career in the field of healthcare science.

Hannah Brace, Reproductive Science Practitioner

A person in a lab

Hannah Brace works as a Reproductive Science Practitioner (RSP) at the Shropshire and Mid Wales Fertility Centre, where they support patients to conceive through a variety of fertility techniques.  

Hannah says “One of my main job roles is to act as support staff in the lab to assist the Clinical Embryologists. This involves witnessing all procedures: from oocyte collections, preparing sperm for treatment and embryo transfers to cryopreserving and thawing embryos and gametes; every day is different, and I love the variety that my job offers."

“I have three A-levels in Biology, Maths and Geology. I specifically chose science-based subjects, as most universities require this to apply to study science degrees. I then went on to achieve a First-Class Honours degree in Biomedical Sciences, graduating from Newcastle University last summer. Whilst at university, I completed a summer research project with the Reproductive Science research group, and my dissertation involved investigating genetic mutations that may contribute to male infertility. This enabled me to gain experience and improve my knowledge of the field, as I knew I wanted to pursue a career in fertility. I started working as a practitioner immediately after university, learning new practical skills and advancing my understanding of clinical procedures."

“I have now been fortunate enough to gain a place on the NHS Scientist Training Programme (STP) to train as a Clinical Embryologist, as an internal candidate within the trust. This means that in September, I will continue my role as an RSP whilst also completing clinical training and studying part time for a MSc in Clinical Embryology. I have dreamt of a career as an embryologist for many years now, and I am so grateful to be given the opportunity to progress to this stage within my role here at SaTH. I am so excited to become more involved with patient journeys and help them towards their goal of having a baby. I enjoy working in a laboratory environment as well as directly interacting with patients so Clinical Science is the perfect career for me!"

"My favourite part of my job is being able to observe how fertilised embryos are developing on the ‘Embryoscope’ viewer. It is amazing to watch the oocytes that have successfully fertilised develop into embryos that could lead to a viable pregnancy!” 


If hearing from our colleagues today has inspired you to pursue a career in Healthcare Science, the NHS Health Careers website has some useful information on pursuing a career in this field.

You may also wish to sign up for job alerts to hear about the latest Healthcare Science vacancies at SaTH.