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Women called to lead the change in the NHS

Women called to lead the change in the NHS

Female healthcare scientists called to apply for NHS fellowship
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NHS England has launched a science fellowship scheme to equip women with the skills to cover leadership roles within the health service.

The fellowship, now in its third year, runs in partnership with Women In Science Engineering Academic & Science (WISE) campaign to award four women with ‘a career development programme including mentoring, communication and leadership skills training to support career development’.

NHS England chief scientific officer, professor Sue Hill OBE announced the scheme today (14 March).

She said: ‘Ensuring our NHS is always at the cutting edge of science, this fellowship programme recognises the significant contribution women make to technology and engineering, through scientific progress and inspiring the next generation of scientists.’

Female healthcare scientists can apply to the fellowship until 13 May.

The programme re-launched just a few days after analysis by NHS Digital on the NHS workforce found that men still dominate leadership positions in the NHS, because 44% of chief executives across NHS Trusts, CCGs, supporting organisations and central bodies are women, with the figure going up to 77% for women employed as band 1 staff.

WISE chief executive Helen Wollaston said that the fellowship enabled women to achieve a great impact within their organisations and beyond.

She said: ‘The ripple effect of the WISE fellowship has surpassed all expectations.

‘With a relatively modest input, these women are going full steam ahead – finding board positions, leading change in their Trusts and beyond.

‘Their energy, enthusiasm and determination are truly impressive and they are a real asset to our campaign.’

Clinical scientist in Audiology at Sheffield Children’s NHS Foundation Trust Dr Michelle Foster, who was awarded a fellowship in 2017, said: ‘The Chief Scientific Officer WISE fellowship has opened opportunities, and the career development programme has given me the confidence to maximise them. 

‘The fellowship gives you a platform from which to be able to network and inspire other women.’

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