The Black Country Pathology Service now boasts one of the biggest teams of microbiologists in the country and state-of-the-art facilities.
BCPS supports Sandwell and West Birmingham NHS Trust, The Dudley Group NHS Foundation Trust, Walsall Healthcare NHS Trust and The Royal Wolverhampton NHS Trust which hosts centralised laboratory for all sites.
Since the BCPS was launched in October 2018, a number of medical and laboratory staff transferred to Wolverhampton to reduce over testing, improving the resilience of IT systems and cut costs.
Microbiology teams gradually made their way over to the New Cross site as part of a phased transition in December 2020 when staff from Walsall Healthcare’s microbiology team moved and this week they were joined by 23 colleagues from Sandwell and West Birmingham alongside a number of new starters.
Susan Lovegrove, microbiology service lead, said: "We are excited to welcome the Sandwell staff, and those newly recruited, to the central lab here at RWT.
"This whole process is about services working together to improve the quality of care for patients and I’m sure the skills and knowledge of these staff members will contribute massively towards that goal. Thank you to everybody involved in the move – from the clinical staff to behind-the-scenes functions like IT and transport."
Samantha Hutchins, biomedical scientist, said: “The first week has been really enjoyable. The team over here have been so welcoming and there’s a real positive atmosphere.
"There’s a vast range of skills being brought together and I’m sure we’ll benefit from working closely with colleagues who work in the different specialist areas."
The end result should be improved waiting times for test results and possibilities for breakthroughs in the future. Phase three of the transition will continue with the transition of staff from The Dudley Group NHS Foundation Trust in Spring 2022.