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Northern Ireland Region: Northern Ireland Pathology Network

In 2006 Dame Ingrid Allen undertook a review of Pathology Services in Northern Ireland on behalf of the DHSSPS; the resulting recommendations (DHSSPS 2007) included the establishment of a Clinical Network for Pathology in Northern Ireland.

The Northern Ireland Pathology Network was formally launched in October 2009. Since then the Network has evolved considerably; it is now hosted by the HSCB and accountable to the HSCB Director of Commissioning. The NI Pathology Network Board’s role is to provide direction and consistency in the development and delivery of the NI Pathology Network Strategic Plan, and in the delivery of pathology services within Northern Ireland by ensuring key Network objectives are met. These objectives are consistent with the recommendations of the pathology review (DHSSPS 2007). Strong governance and accountability arrangements are in place to ensure that the Network is able to carry out its role. Membership of the Network Board is as follows:

  • Network Chair
  • Network Clinical Director
  • Clinical and Executive leadsfromfive HSC Trusts;
  • NI Blood Transfusion Service;
  • HSC Board;
  • Public Health Agency;
  • Royal Collage of Pathologists;
  • Queens University Belfast;
  • The University of Ulster;
  • The Patient and Client Council.

Board meetings are attended as required by the Chairs of the 10 Pathology Network clinical Specialty Fora. The Fora role is to provide expert advice and support for the respective pathology discipline to the Network Board, other Specialty Fora, Network Strategic Project Groups and others as required. Speciality Fora may have sub-groups focusing on particular pieces of work as required. The Specialty Fora are as follows:

  • Molecular Diagnostics (all disciplines)
  • Clinical Biochemistry
  • Haematology
  • Blood Transfusion
  • Point of Care (near patient) Testing
  • Cellular Pathology
  • Microbiology & Virology
  • Immunology
  • Medical Genetics
  • Histocompatibility and Immunogenetics (H&I)

In addition to the Specialty Fora, the Network Board convenes Strategic Project groupings to take forward specific pieces of work, for example ICT.

General queries on the NI Pathology Network should be directed in the first instance to the Network Manager, Sarah Buckley, by phone 07825147042.

(This page is maintained by the ACB Northern Ireland Region)

Updated 20th August 2013

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