Keri Bramford-Hale
Clinical Evidence Based Information Service (CEBIS)
University Hospitals of Coventry and Warwickshire NHS Trust (UHCW)

My first degree was in Biomedical Sciences and like the rest of my class, I headed straight over into lab research. I stayed there for 8 years, obtained my Masters, juggled research and teaching with the demands of a growing family along the way.

After taking a break to focus on things at home, I ended up volunteering for the NHS as part of the award winning 100,000 Genomes Project and that soon developed into a paid, 3 year post. I worked over the wider West Midlands area to recruit rare disease families and cancer patients to genomic screening. Along the way I discovered that I am skilled in being able to explain complex ideas to a lay audience, acting as a ‘bridge’ between medicine, science and patients. It was one of the first times I was able to appreciate the impact of being a scientist, away from the bench.

Subsequently, I’ve worked as a Healthcare Planner, which gave me a good grounding in NHS strategies, policies, and business case writing. With the pandemic looming, I took some time to support my family through their own experience of COVID-19. I also had some interesting odd-jobs along the way, from cycle mechanic to science technician!

The role with CEBIS was a bit of a curve ball: I saw the advert on a jobs mailing list and it made the research part of my brain fire off in all directions. I have been with the CEBIS team at UHCW a year now and rather enjoy looking back at that meandering career path to where I am now! I bring with me that scientific research background, but also the ability to confidently communicate between all levels of understanding, a skill developed when working across NHS Trusts and between patients, their families and the clinical staff supporting them.