Following a distinguished career at NSW Health and NSW Health Pathology spanning 20 years, Michael Clough is moving on to pursue new challenges and spend time with this family.
Michael is the Lead Discipline Scientist (Chemical Pathology, West, Rural and Regional) based at NSWHP’s ICPMR Westmead. He’s well known to many in the city and regional labs, and has always championed the professional development of up-and-coming scientists across the organisation.
In 2001, Michael was the first Network Scientist to be employed at Westmead ICPMR. He brought a wealth of scientific and management experience gained at our labs at Royal North Shore and Prince of Wales Hospitals as well as the private sector.
Over the course of his career at NSW Health Pathology’s ICPMR Westmead, Michael has had many highlights including:
- The standardisation of Chemical Pathology instrumentation across what was then six different pathology services (Sydney South Western Pathology Service, Southern, ICPMR, Nepean, Central West Pathology Service and Orana) and covered the current 27 laboratories. Over time and thanks to the direction of Michael, we were able to establish common training, reporting, documentation, and quality systems. This enabled improved peer support and the ability to move trained staff to other laboratories as required. One of the major benefits to come out of this, was opening our Broken Hill laboratory with staff from across the network within a two-week period in 2004.
- Being part of the team working though the logistics of currently rolling out new Chemical Pathology analyser equipment at 27 labs in Western Sydney, and rural and regional NSW.
- Helping establish POCT testing in our rural and regional sites. The clinical units offering Arterial Blood Gas analysis (ABG) services were expanded across the metropolitan campuses and all were NATA accredited for the first time. In 2010, Michael introduced POCT to the regional sites with the support of the Southern and Murrumbidgee LHDs. This followed with services at Broken Hill, Neonatal Emergency Transport Service (NETS) and the provision of HbA1c testing for Diabetic and Pre-Admission clinics at Westmead and Dubbo. These initial steps have evolved into NSW Health Pathology’s statewide POCT service as we know it today.
- Introducing a third-party quality control software package onto a network server for use by all laboratories. This was later updated to what we have now but across multiple disciplines.
- Rationalisation of the Laboratory Information Management System build with a central build across all Chemical Pathology services. This was when the Cerner Millennium was implemented across all current Western Sydney, rural and regional sites. Rather than have a separate build for each chemistry laboratory, we had the same build and procedures across all sites. This enabled common report formats and reference intervals across the network.
However, Michael’s most valued achievement has been the scientific development and mentoring of staff.
With his help, more efficient procedures and improvements in service delivery have been achieved for Chemical Pathology. He’s been grateful for all the opportunities, support and friendship from staff across all levels around NSW.
While we are very sad to see Michael leave, we wish him all the best in his new endeavours.
Thank you for your dedication, innovation, friendship and passion for helping develop the professional skills of your colleagues.
Michael’s last day at NSW Health Pathology will be 14 July.