Earlier this month, staff from Ashford and St Peter’s Hospitals and Royal Surrey County Hospital joined forces to support National Pathology Week. Pathology is involved in over 70% of clinical decisions made in the NHS, yet few people know much about these vital services.

Sue Saunders, Pathology Training Co-ordinator at Ashford and St Peter’s, said: “Lots of people think pathology is all about dead bodies, as shown in programmes like Silent Witness and CSI, but actually the majority of pathologists work to diagnose, treat and prevent illness in living patients. We wanted to give local students an insight into the work we do, so invited 16 science A-Level pupils from Gordon’s School in Chobham to a special event at The Lightbox gallery and museum in Woking on 3rd November, as part of the National Pathology Week celebrations.”

Throughout the day, a number of table top activities were set up including a mock crime scene and infection control exercise, and students had the opportunity to use a multi-headed mircroscope to view tissue sections and blood cells They also came up with some innovative ideas to produce a test for Coeliac Disease and Threadworm.

In the evening a reception was hosted by Professor Peter Furness, President of the Royal College of Pathology with local dignitaries and fellow professionals from across Surrey attending. Sue said: “The day was a great success and the students found it really useful – they learnt a lot about the scope of pathology and we hope to expand the event next year so more students can attend.”

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