Where could you work in the NHS? This was the question posed to Year 8 girls at Bolton School by medical professionals, Stefan and Toby, as they explained that there are more than 350 careers that can be followed in the service. And, they added, it is worth remembering that only five of these exclusively demand the top A-A*/8-9 grades.
In a presentation entitled ‘The Human Guinea Pigs Show’, and using real medical equipment, the girls were allowed to explore how bodies work and, at the same time, learn about the different NHS careers open to them.
Through an interactive presentation, pupils learnt how recording basic medical observations is the work of a paramedic, nurse, midwife and GP; how respiratory testing is undertaken by, among others, health promotion officers, smoking cessation practitioners, GPs, respiratory physiologists and health promotion officers; and how ultrasounds can help measure growth and blood vessel size, and are operated by sonographers, cardiac physiologists, hepatologists (liver), nephrologists (kidneys) and physiotherapists.
By making use of the iPhone retina scan, pupils learnt about the work of ophthalmic scientists, medical engineers, software engineers and opticians and, by taking readings on one another with the pulse doppler, they learnt about the work of vascular scientists, medical physicists and medical engineers.
The girls were also apprised of the top 10 of not-so-well-known occupations in the health service, including cardiac physiologist, operating department practitioners, cytogeneticists, pharmacists and anaesthetists. They learnt how working in life sciences meant a laboratory-based career, working in physiological jobs involved more patient contact, employment in medical physics is technology- and patient-based, whilst anyone wishing to work solely in technology-based careers should focus on clinical engineering.