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Local school children inspired to take up careers in the NHS as senior doctor heads back to the classroom

As part of plans to mark the NHS’s 70th birthday in July, a leading consultant from University Hospital of Birmingham returned to the classroom in Herefordshire to promote careers in the NHS.

Dr Keith Roberts has worked in the NHS as a Consultant Liver Transplant, Hepatobiliary and Pancreatic Surgeon for five years.

He attended Hereford Sixth Form College to talk about the vast number of career opportunities in the NHS including, doctors, nurses, midwives, paramedics, dentists and many more, as well as inspiring young people to take up science, technology, engineering and maths (STEM) subjects.

Dr. Keith Roberts, said: “I was pleased to be able to visit Hereford Sixth Form College to explain how I became a surgeon and why I do it. I hope that by speaking to young people at a point when they are making critical decisions about their future that we can inspire them that a future career in the NHS and medical profession is worthwhile and rewarding.”

The NHS is the country’s largest employer offering more than 350 types of profession, many requiring STEM qualifications.

However, only one in four secondary school students choose two STEM A-Levels, and only one in 11 choose maths and physics.

Simon Stevens, Chief Executive of NHS England added: “As the NHS turns 70 this year, we can rightly be proud of the enormous contribution it has made to our country.

“But it is absolutely vital we inspire young people to think about working in the NHS and to take up the vital STEM subjects that will equip them for rewarding careers in the future workforce of the NHS.”

Earlier this year NHS England and NHS Improvement joined forces with the charity Speakers for School.  The collaboration is giving school pupils access to insights and advice from individuals who are at the top of the health profession, helping broaden students’ horizons for what they can achieve.

The campaign is part of plans to mark the NHS’s 70th birthday with well-known media medics and other high-profile speakers volunteering their time to visit secondary schools and colleges in England this summer to help recruit the workforce of the future.

Marco Martinelli, Enrichment Coordinator for Hereford Sixth Form, said: Dr Keith Roberts gave the students on our medical applications programme a fantastic insight into the reality of a career in the NHS today. To hear first hand advice and guidance on forging careers in a competitive environment is exactly what aspiring students need.”

Find out more about the NHS’s plans for its 70th birthday at www.nhs70.nhs.uk