University hosts life sciences body’s first post-pandemic face-to-face gathering

29 November 2021

Birmingham City University welcomed leading figures in the life sciences sector from across the region to its campus. 

Representatives from the life sciences industry network Medilink Midlands held their first in-person AGM since the outbreak of the Covid-19 pandemic – at the University’s Seacole Building at its City South Campus in Edgbaston, Birmingham.

Medilink Midlands is a membership-based representative body for businesses and organisations working within field of life sciences – broadly speaking the branch of science concerned with living organisms and life processes.

They work with companies across the life sciences sector – from multi-nationals to SMEs – as well as government and universities and NHS, offering services including research and development collaboration opportunities, skills training and events, and regulatory guidance and advice, all designed to further boost innovation and growth within the region’s burgeoning life sciences sector, which contributes some £6.4bn to the UK economy.

Birmingham City University has been a member of Medilink Midlands since 2013 and in 2019 was made a Patron in recognition of its prominence within the region and the importance it place on life sciences. 

As home to the university’s health and life sciences courses, the Seacole Building was a fitting environment for the Medilink Midlands meeting.

Subjects taught on site include biomedical sciences, and medical engineering applications for healthcare.

Genetics and bone mineral density, and the biomarkers of chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) are among the topics currently being researched at the centre.

The £30 million Seacole Building also houses state-of-the-art teaching facilities including a simulated operating theatre and hospital wards, a fully-equipped birthing room, a simulated home environment and a fully-functional radiography suite and 3D imaging diagnostic suite.

Medilink Midlands representative were taken on a tour of the facilities as part of their visit and also met with members of the University’s Higher Level Skills Match project team.

Part-funded by the European Social Fund, the project provides SMEs with free, account managed recruitment support for graduate level roles as well as fully-funded workshops based on live business development trends.

Professor Martin Levermore (pictured), chair of Medilink Midlands, and also a visiting professor at Birmingham City University, said: “We were immensely grateful to Birmingham City University for hosting us and for providing us with a tour of their excellent teaching and learning facilities.

“As a Visiting Professor here, I’m well aware of the great work going on in our field. I believe the University and higher education in general has a vital role to play in developing the life sciences sector both in terms of increasing our knowledge and understanding through research and the development of new technologies, but also in providing new talent into the discipline.”

Hannah Abbott, head of School of Health Sciences at Birmingham City University, said: “We were delighted to welcome Medilink Midlands to our campus last week.

“It’s vitally important that we develop and maintain links with such well-connected professional membership bodies to ensure that our teaching and learning, and our research outputs, are up to date with the modern demands of the health and life sciences sector.”

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