Band 7 Biomedical Scientist

Biomedical Scientists support the blood transfusion services of the UK, and hospital blood banks. They prepare blood transfusions and plasma to administer to patients and are responsible for ensuring that the blood groups of donors and patients are compatible. At higher levels they may be responsible for staff training, ensuring compliance, implementing guidelines, and so on.

See below for an insight in to the role of a Band 7 BMS working in transfusion in an NHS hospital:

“I finished my Biomedical Sciences in 2004 and started my training at an NHS hospital in the Haematology and Blood Transfusion Department.  I wasn’t sure about working in a laboratory at first but was very interested in the diagnosis of disease.  My training included sample preparation, analysis for full blood counts, coagulation screens, blood grouping and also technical validation of the results. I enjoyed the laboratory work, especially blood transfusion as I really felt I contributed to patient care when providing blood and other products for treatment and in emergency situations. I completed my certificate of competence in 2005 and qualified as a Biomedical Scientist.  I learnt a lot about routine haematology and antenatal screening when I worked at this hospital which was interesting.

In 2007 I moved to a children’s NHS hospital, again in the Haematology and Blood Transfusion Department.  This gave me the opportunity and experience in paediatrics haematology and transfusion and I learnt a lot about paediatric diseases.  I studied for my MSc Biomedical Science which was difficult at times working full time, but completed this and in 2009 I was promoted to Senior Biomedical Scientist (Band 7).  This meant I had much more responsibility for training, validation/implementation of new procedures and ensuring compliance with guidelines/regulations e.g. CPA and MHRA.

The trust moved the laboratory in 2009 and I became permanent senior in blood transfusion. The paediatric and adult laboratory merged so I then had the opportunity to develop my knowledge in both antenatal screening and bone marrow transplant. I was involved in organising Antibody titre reporting and provision of blood for intrauterine transfusion (IUT) in pregnant women.  I also had the opportunity to introduce new automated blood grouping analysers; I enjoyed the validation work and training of staff to use the new equipment.  I have gained valuable knowledge and had experience of many issues in blood transfusion like a Bombay phenotype group, which is very rare!

I have recently taken up a new post at another children’s hospital as Senior BMS, back into paediatric blood transfusion which I find very rewarding.”