July 15, 2024

Health Benefit

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Supporting the next generation of health data scientists with HDR UK’s Black Internship Programme

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Supporting the next generation of health data scientists with HDR UK’s Black Internship Programme

The Trust is hosting two interns this summer as part of the Health Data Research UK’s Black Internship Programme to tackle the underrepresentation of Black people within the health data science sector.


The internship programme helps transform the prospects of, and provide opportunities for, early career Black people in the UK to flourish in their future health data science careers. It is run by Health Data Research UK (HDR UK) and the UK Health Data Research Alliance, of which the Trust is an alliance member, in partnership with 10,000 Black Interns initiative.


Having begun their eight-week placements at the beginning of July 2023, the interns will support ongoing data projects across the Trust as well carry out their own, clearly defined, research projects.


Ben Glampson, research informatics programme manager who is supporting the mentoring of the interns during their programme, said: “We are delighted to support the HDR UK Black Internships programme. Our two interns will be involved in data science projects focusing on trust priorities around inclusive recruitment and patient safety – the projects will provide our interns with great experience working in the exciting field of NHS health data science.”


The interns will be based in the Digital Collaboration Space part of the Paddington Life Sciences development – enabling them to easily collaborate and network with the wider digital health team as part of the programme.


Dr Erik Mayer, NIHR Imperial BRC digital health theme lead and director of iCARE and the Digital Collaboration Space, said: “I am very grateful to HDR UK for the opportunity for iCARE (Imperial Clinical Analytics, Research & Evaluation) to participate once again in this fantastic initiative, and in particular Dona Reddiar, HDR UK Doctoral and Internship Programme Manager, for her leadership in making this programme such a success nationally.


“I am also grateful to Rachael Lear, Sarindi Aryasinghe and Ben Glampson, from the iCARE team, in providing the necessary multidisciplinary mentoring skills and expertise across clinical, management and health informatics to the advantage of our interns, providing them with the foundation on which to build on for success in the digitally transformed NHS.”


Welcoming our 2023 interns


This year, HDR UK and its partners have recruited 93 interns for placements at 51 host organisations across a wide range of sectors including NHS, academic, charities, civil service and industry. The Trust is delighted to host Somaya and Olalekan this summer.


Somaya is a BSc Biochemistry student at King’s College London.


Somaya said: “I am thrilled to have secured an internship with HDR UK and I hope to gain valuable professional experience during my time at Imperial College Healthcare NHS Trust.


“I am interested in the dynamic intersection between data, technology and healthcare in evaluating and implementing research, treatments and diagnostic techniques to improve patient outcomes. From this programme, I look forward to enhancing my analytical skills through data visualisation and predictive modelling techniques and gaining deeper insight into the application of biological data in the healthcare sector.”


Olalekan is completing a master’s degree in Applied Artificial Intelligence and Data Science at Southampton Solent University.


Olalekan said: “I am passionate about the application of artificial intelligence and data science in advancing diagnosis in the health sector which is not only the most important sector in human development but also a very sensitive one. I am interested in the achievement of better outcomes in diagnosis, wait times, cost of care and the overall patient experience whilst working with experienced professionals.


“The internship at Imperial College Healthcare NHS trust offers a rare opportunity of a real-life data science experience at the unique crossroad of public healthcare, academia, and advanced medical research.”

Group of colleagues standing out the Digital Collaboration Space
Somaya (second right) pictured with Amanda Pritchard (NHS England Chief Executive) and Trust staff



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