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Meet the Trainee


I am one of the ID/MM specialty trainees in Swansea. Infection is a topic I have been interested in pursuing for many years, ever since I first did my student elective in rural Kenya. Consequently, I have worked in a number of different areas trying to get into this specialty, as given is breadth it can be very competitive. I qualified and started my training in Ireland, before spending time in New Zealand, back to Ireland, a brief stint in London and now I am settled in South Wales. 

The Infection training rotation in Swansea is quite a a new program and with this we are all intimately involved in service development on a daily basis. There is a wide plethora of pathology here, very good collegial support and I can easily say no two days are the same. I feel challenged and engaged on a daily basis, but have never felt out of my depth.


I’ve had an interest in infection specialties since university, when I intercalated in Tropical Disease Biology. I just find the combination of laboratory and clinical skills, particularly the diverse range of presentations very interesting. After graduating, I predominantly worked in various hospitals in Merseyside, engaging with infection specialties where possible. After core medical training, I spent three years working in New Zealand (highly recommended), one of which was spent as a microbiology registrar. I chose Wales after recommendations from consultant colleagues in New Zealand and friends living down here. Both Cardiff and Swansea are great cities to live in, with lots going on and the surrounding areas are pretty spectacular with heaps to do outdoors. Despite the challenges afforded by the pandemic, it has been very easy to settle in here thanks to supportive and enthusiastic colleagues, and I look forward to spending many more years here.


My path to becoming a microbiology registrar was more convoluted than it is for most. Having completed a genetics BSc, I then did a PhD researching novel ways of preventing the development of bacterial biofilms. After my PhD, I become a Clinical Scientist in microbiology. I felt this would give me the opportunity to continue with research, work in a clinical laboratory, get some clinical experience and it also involved completing a MSc in Medical microbiology. Part of my clinical scientist training involved working closely with the clinical virologist and microbiologists. I loved the varied nature of their job and decided that this is what I wanted to do. After completing this clinical scientist training programme, I did a fast track medicine degree. A 4 month placement in microbiology during the second year of my foundation training helped confirm that I wanted to be a Medical Microbiologist. After two years of further medical training I finally got the job I’d wanted for so long as a microbiology registrar at the Heath hospital in Cardiff.  I’m now more than half way through my infection training and can’t see myself doing anything else - I definitely think it’s the best job in the hospital.