Angharad Williams, 27, is a trainee Clinical Scientist
To mark three decades of the IWA’s role in making Wales better, we decided to look forward to ‘the next thirty years’ by introducing some of the people who will be shaping ‘the Welsh agenda’ as the future unfolds. We have teamed up with PricewaterhouseCoopers and their #GreatWales campaign, which celebrates the ideas and people who contribute to the Wales of the future.
Angharad Williams, 27, Trainee Clinical Scientist, All Wales Medical Genetics Service, University Hospital of Wales
I am currently in a unique role, funded by the Wales Cancer Research Centre; the focus of which is to introduce new DNA cancer biomarkers into routine clinical practice. I have been heavily involved in developing an innovative new service which allows patients who are too ill for an intrusive lung biopsy to receive blood based testing for life extending treatments; treatments that they would not otherwise be able to access. Our service was the first NHS genetic diagnostic service to use non-invasive liquid biopsies for cancer patients in the UK. In my role, I collaborate broadly with researchers, charities, clinicians and patient groups and so have been able to see the direct impact of my work. Oncologists have enthusiastically related stories of patients making excellent progress on these treatments which would not have been possible without our service. Our team recently won a MediWales Innovation award for this new diagnostic service.
I personally enjoyed the challenge of using state of the art technologies and research to form a genetics service that directly impacts patient’s lives. I want to continue to develop and implement new diagnostic technologies into NHS practice to better support and direct patient care. My next role will be utilising new DNA sequencing technologies to help diagnose children with developmental delays, where current testing methods cannot provide answers. Genomics in healthcare is now a fast moving field, with constant developments, and at the All Wales Medical Genetics Service, I feel we have the skills and capabilities to keep Wales at the forefront of genomic healthcare.
Each day, throughout the month of June, we are celebrating the exceptional people on the Next 30 list by publishing a short pen portrait here on Click on Wales, as well as raising their profile on Twitter using #IWAnext30 and #GreatWales to highlight the exciting contributions these people are making to Wales’ future.