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Senior Biomedical Scientist

Torbay and South Devon NHS Foundation Trust
£43,742 to £50,056 a year PA
Closing date
19 Jul 2024

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Healthcare scientist, Biomedical scientist
Band 7
Contract Type
Full Time
Clinical Biochemistry essential to the secondary and acute care pathways of the Trust. Team provides a 24/7 diagnostic service using a variety of automation and specialised techniques.

Challenging and varied role with opportunity for making a positive difference to patient outcomes via innovation and the application of science and technology

The Clinical Biochemistry Department provides acomprehensive service for the Trust and associated NHS organisations. The annual workload for Clinical Biochemistry is currently 430000requests, 60% originating from GPs.Clinical Biochemistry is fully equipped with Roche Cobas 8000s, Cobas 8100 pre- analytical equipment, Sebia capillary electrophoresis andHba1c analysis.The Department is also extensively involved with Point of Care (including Roche Inform glucose and Coagucheck meters, Werfen IL5000 bloodgas analysers and Nova blood ketone and glucose meters).

The Department uses the Laboratory Information System Clinisys Winpath. We are currently implementing a new LIMS: Epic BeakerA position now exists for a Band 7 Senior BMS to support the Clinical Biochemistry Department in the provision of its services: including Automation and Special Investigations

Main duties of the job

Responsible for the supervision and day to day running of specialised sections in Clinical Biochemistry i.e. Automation and Specialised Biochemistry

Provide specific technical Clinical Biochemical advice to laboratory, medical, nursing and other healthcare professional staff on the appropriateness of Clinical Biochemistry tests, within your own limits

Use specialist knowledge to support Clinical Biochemistry in areas required for the provision of service: e.g. quality management, health and safety, POCT and continuous professional development

To maintain and operate equipment subject to HCPC and UKAS regulation

Supervise the training of new staff

Take part in 24/7 shift system in times of service criticality

Providing an equitable service across the Trust so that patients have equal access to key tests and services are sustainable

By working to quality standards set by UKAS, ISO 15189 and other relevant accreditation bodies.

By taking personal responsibility for service improvement, by implementing change positively and contributing to team discussions in a constructive and flexible way

Deputise when required for Deputy Head BMS or Head BMS

About us

Torbay and South Devon NHS Foundation Trust is an integrated organisation providing acute health care services from Torbay Hospital,community health services and adult social care healthcare services for a residential population of 375,000 (and a further 100000 visitors in theholiday season). The Trust operates Torbay Hospital and other community hospitals in Devon.

Why work with us

Job description

Job responsibilities

Communication and Working Relationships
  • Advise other health care professionals of the technical/analytical validity of results using knowledge and experience, and to refer complex queries on to more qualified staff as necessary.
  • Answer telephone enquiries regarding results and other general issues i.e. containers to be used and the correct conditions for taking of specimens. To understand when to refer more complex queries are referred to more senior members of staff.
  • Perform urgent analyses as requested by clinicians, utilising the most appropriate methods, techniques or analysers to provide results as soon as possible, and telephone results as necessary.
  • To meet with company technical/sales representatives in order to keep up to date with regard to the latest equipment and methodologies.
  • To attend and contribute to Senior staff meetings

Planning and Organisation
  • To direct staff in the running of the section, allocating duties accordingly
  • To supervise, instruct and train qualified Biomedical Scientist, Trainees, and Medical Laboratory Assistants assigned to your specialist section as required.
  • To develop and contribute to regular staff competency testing.
  • Support CPD for all staff
  • Maintain and develop ones own scientific expertise i.e. CPD
  • To assess the suitability of external and internal Quality Control (QC) schemes for use within the section taking into account cost and reliability. To ensure that agreed internal and external QC procedures are carried out, to evaluate reports from EQA schemes and the appropriate corrective measures are undertaken whenever necessary.
  • To daily assist the Laboratory Manager and Deputy Lab Manager of the Department by liaising with other Section Managers to assign appropriate levels of available staff to all the sections in order to meet the daily workload requirements, and to ensure adequate and appropriate Senior cover at all times.

Responsibility and Accountability
  • Run Clinical Biochemistry automation, analysers and instrumentation according to Standard Operating Procedures (SOPs) and manufacturers user manuals, utilising knowledge and skills to authorise patient results.
  • Carry out routine maintenance of analysers in accordance with SOPs and user manuals to ensure minimum downtime and 24/7 availability.
  • Follow SOPs, and aid in their updating and re-writing where necessary. Be prepared to comment on your own work or work of the Department to improve service delivery.
  • When necessary uncapping of samples for analysis, loading samples on to analysers, unloading and recapping of samples, sorting into racks and transferring to the refrigerator on completion of analysis.
  • Have extensive knowledge of the factors affecting Biochemical test results with regard to age and sex related reference ranges, sample state, analyser and method limitations.
  • A basic clinical understanding of disease processes, clinical summaries on request forms and the Biochemical impact of disease. To use this knowledge to evaluate and authorise results. To refer results unexplained by these variables to more qualified staff
  • Have a knowledge and understanding of Quality Control systems, both internal and external, and to understand their impact upon result validity.
  • Understand the theory behind chemical reactions. How these theories are applied in the analysis of biological specimens, and how these reactions are controlled and measured in Biochemistry analysers.
  • Understand the use of manual techniques, e.g. Liquid handling, and how these same techniques are modified and applied in automated analysers.
  • Authorise completed work as soon as possible so that results are available for other health care professionals in their diagnosis, treatment and ongoing care of patients.
  • Undertake the processing of samples for Clinical Trials some of which are on-going, or any form of Research and Development work undertaken within the laboratory, and the collection of results.
  • Provide support for a specific area of the Laboratory, upon direction from Deputy Head or Head BMS, including: POCT, Quality Management, Training, competency testing, Health and Safety.
  • To work with the Pathology Quality team to undertake audits of laboratory processes in compliance with ISO 15189.
  • Maintain the laboratory quality management system by means of QPulse

Policy and Service Responsibility
  • To participate in annual Individual Performance Review.
  • Keep abreast of current developments in Clinical Biochemistry and to ensure accurate and up to date knowledge in the field.
  • Active participation in Continuing Professional Development and the maintenance of Health Professions Council registration.
  • Maintain own competencies as described by Department Record of Training, Ongoing Assessment and Trust Mandatory Training.
  • To ensure that the work within the section is carried out to rigorous scientific standards as laid down by UKAS and ISO15189. This involves being responsible for the work being carried out by following departmental procedures, and ensuring the quality control performance are maintained at the highest level and all relevant documentation and forms are completed fully.
  • To adhere to all national and local policies for Health and Safety, COSHH, Risk Assessments etc. to ensure that all substances within the Department governed by the regulations are stored, handled and used in accordance with these protocols. To be aware of the inherent hazards of the work and to take appropriate precautions at all times, reporting any accidents or potential hazards to the Clinical Biochemistry Head BMS.
  • When required conduct return to work interviews as per Trust Attendance policy (H33).

Responsibility for Finance, Equipment and Other Resources
  • Work with partners in the managed service contract to monitor costs and ensure value for money. To liaise with partners (Laboratory Support Coordinators) in the managed service contract on technical and quality issues
  • To contribute to cost improvement plans as directed by Head BMS
  • To be responsible for the troubleshooting, repair and maintenance of the automation/analysers within your specialist area ensuring correct operation in optimal condition. This may require delicate handling and fine adjusting of various parts. Coordination with company engineers in the diagnosis of major problems to ensure prompt repairs or calling out an engineer to guarantee continuous operation.
  • To participate in the technical research and development within the specialist section for a continuous improvement to the service to patients. Development is on-going and includes the selection and implementation of equipment, reagents and diagnostic methods by the production and comparison of statistical data using spreadsheets and databases.
  • When required assist laboratory management on the procurement and evaluation of new equipment and services

Responsibility for Supervision, Leadership and Management

Responsible for a nominated section of the Clinical Biochemistry Department. To have a basic clinical understanding of disease processes and the biochemical impact of disease. To have specialist technical knowledge of analysers and methods within their section. To have specialist knowledge of the factors affecting results within their section, such as age and sex related reference ranges, clinical details, sample type and other sources of uncertainty of measurement. To apply that knowledge to technically interpret and authorise results, these results may be incomplete, complex or conflicting and have been referred to the post holder from less experienced qualified staff.
  • To support the POCT team with Near Patient Testing throughout the Trust e.g. Blood Gas Analysers in ICU, AE, Maternity, Heart and Lung Unit.
  • To assist the Deputy Head BMS and Head BMS by being responsible for the provision of a specialised technical and diagnostic Clinical Biochemistry service by performing the more highly complex investigations within your own specialised area and by giving technical advice to colleagues and medical staff.

Information Technology and Administrative Duties
  • To be competent in the use of laboratory IT systems, e.g Clinisys Winpath LIMS, Epic Beaker, Roche cITm or Infinity middleware, Sebia Phoresis, QPulse and individual analyser controller IT.

To ensure the integrity of data when entering demographics and results from a range of sources into the laboratory information system (LIMS).

Person Specification

Qualification and Training


  • BSc (Hons) in Biomedical Sciences or equivalent
  • Fellowship of the Institute of Biomedical Sciences (FIBMS) by either Special Examination in Clinical Biochemistry, MSc or Higher Specialist Diploma
  • Current registration in Clinical Biochemistry with the Health Professions Council (HCPC).


  • Recent biochemistry experience in an NHS diagnostic laboratory

Knowledge and Skills


  • Experience with a computerised Pathology System
  • Experience of UKAS, ISO15189, Audit and Quality Management
  • Proven communication and interpersonal skills to work effectively with both own co-workers and other, external health care professionals


  • Experience with Clinisys Winpath or Epic Beaker LIMS

Special Experience


  • Specialist knowledge of Biochemistry analysers and high degree of technical competence.
  • Experience in out of hours service (working alone)
  • Knowledge and Understanding of specialised Clinical Biochemistry techniques e.g. protein electrophoresis, HPLC


  • Experience of Roche Cobas analysers
  • Experience of Sebia electrophoresis equipment
  • POCT experience e.g. Roche Inform and Coagucheck and Werfen Blood Gas

Employer details

Employer name

Torbay and South Devon NHS Foundation Trust


Clinical Biochemistry

Level 3 Torbay Hospital Lowe's Bridge



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