Workforce profile: Angela Lambert
Job title: Cardiac Physiologist
Organisation: The Rotherham Hospital NHS Foundation Trust (RHFT)
Words by Angela 

I started working in Cardiology at Rotherham NHS Foundation Trust in 2006, getting my qualification from the SCST (The Society for Cardiological Science and Technology) in 2007 which gave me a Band 3 and Senior Cardiographer post.

I love my job and the team I work with but have always felt I could do more and wanted to progress and become a Cardiac Physiologist. This opportunity was made available for me with the apprenticeship degree that was the first of its kind in the country for this type of degree. When I was offered the chance to gain this qualification I was 38, married with 2 children and a very busy home life caring for elderly and disabled family members and competitive sports with my children. Although I knew it would not be easy, the decision to take it on was not a hard one.

Over the last 3 years I have developed the skills and qualifications needed to become a cardiac physiologist while being supported by a fantastic team who already knew my strengths and weaknesses. We have always had a vast array of students within the department but I feel the team had a vested interest in my training as I was already part of the team and the skills and knowledge they would be passing on would be utilised by the department when I was qualified. Every member of the department has taught me skills/knowledge needed for the course, supported me when I felt overwhelmed or stressed and cheered me on when I have accomplished small and large milestones.

As a person it has helped me to progress my career and gain a qualification while still earning a wage and the hospital has paid for the course from the apprenticeship levy. The skills I have developed have been utilised during my training, allowing me to become a more versatile member of staff and able to help out in more areas. This was very useful to the team during the initial stages of COVID-19 as I was able to step in and cover more areas for staff that were working from home or isolating.

I would recommend the apprenticeship scheme to everyone, it is not just for young people leaving school and I am evidence of this. You learn the skills needed for the job as well as gaining the qualifications needed. The department was able to up skill an existing member of staff and can keep that skill set within the department unlike with other students who move on after training.

Although taking this on was not easy it was worth it and I have no regrets at all! I would definatly recommend it to others.