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Issue 295 – Local scientist at Downing Street

Frome scientist Nicky Fleming was recently invited to Downing Street to celebrate her individual contribution to the NHS and the launch of a new book ‘Extraordinary You – Science in Healthcare’. Two years ago Nicky won the NHS Healthcare Scientist of the Year award for Innovation.

Her pioneering work within the NHS has now been recognised by her being included in this new book celebrating the work of a hundred exceptional scientists working in the NHS.
‘Extraordinary You’ profiles the pioneering work of these healthcare scientists and details their reasons for choosing a career in science. The book was showcased at a reception in Number 11 Downing Street, attended by key healthcare scientists along with Health Minister Ann Keen and Chief Scientific Officer Professor Sue Hill.
Nicky has a unique role working closely with the Department of Health and Strategic Health Authorities. As a consultant biomedical scientist she has developed scientific services that patients can access more easily. 80% of clinical diagnoses are based on scientific tests of the kind that Nicky and her peers develop.
The book describes Nicky as “ a woman on a mission”, using her science in the community to make people’s lives easier.
Health Minister Ann Keen said, “It is so important that we change conventional views of scientists locked away in hospital laboratories to one that is more current. More and more healthcare scientists regularly engage face-to-face with patients as well as aiding doctors in up to 80 per cent of all clinical diagnosis.”
Chief Scientific Officer Sue Hill said, “Healthcare scientists provide the most cutting-edge technology and science for patients in order to improve healthcare and ‘Extraordinary You’ profiles the vital research and patient care they provide”.
Nicky is delighted to have been included in this book. “Being a scientist within healthcare is exciting and rewarding,” she said. “I feel passionate about bringing science to the patients – I know it makes such a difference to people’s lives, improving their access to both diagnosis and treatment.”
Nicky is currently a lead adviser at the Department of Health for the ‘Modernising Scientific Careers’ programme. She is about to embark on an ambitious programme for NHS London which includes the redesigning of healthcare science delivery for London. However she also maintains her local connections by providing scientific expertise at Mendip area sexual health clinic. “I know it makes such a difference to people’s lives,” said Nicky.

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