Dr Chris Pickering
UHNM Clinical Lead for Emergency Medicine Chris Pickering studied at Jesus College Cambridge for three years before moving to London to complete his studies. A former pupil at Haileyberry College, he moved to the West Midlands in 2011, working in a number of the region's hospitals before settling at the Royal Stoke.
He said: "I went into emergency medicine as I enjoyed it while working at Northwick Park in London and was encouraged to pursue it as a career. I particularly enjoy the teamwork and sense of family that facing constant pressures gives you. I think it is the people I work with that make the job so much fun while often dealing with misfortune and tragedy.
"I came to Stoke as a trainee and found the department incredibly supportive. From the consultants through to the domestics, everyone looks out for each other and the whole place felt like somewhere I wanted to come back to.
"Working in Emergency Medicine can be incredibly varied and no two days are ever the same. I have seen new life and death; incredible joy and heartache. Two most two memorable experiences were helping organise a wedding for a terminally ill patient so that he and his wife could finally say 'I do'. We managed to organise the whole thing including food, music, a venue and the official bits in a little over four hours. It was absolutely magical.
"The second was a young, heavily pregnant lady who was transferred from another hospital with an acute stroke. It was the weekend and the theatre staff were busy with another case. We managed to get all the staff in, even those not on call, to come and open another theatre so that she could get the thrombectomy she needed. The procedure was a success and she left hospital with no residual effects of the stroke. She then safely and naturally delivered her child.
"I have had many more cases that have touched my colleagues and I but both these cases really highlight our team effort and how interdependent the whole hospital is on goodwill and its fantastic staff.
"Every day we come to work to do the best for whoever comes in through our doors. Sometimes our best doesn't save a life or doesn't solve the problem but sometimes it is enough and the patient survives.
"The highest points are always the patients who have arrived in the most serious condition that leave hospital alive. I have been lucky to be involved in a couple of fantastic team efforts where a patient who arrived in cardiac arrest has left hospital independently.
"The lows are always the bad news, telling a family that they have lost a loved one is never easy and is something I do with a heavy heart.
"I will always support the team that have sometimes worked for hours to try and save a life, giving everything physically and emotionally."
Aside from treating patients with life threatening injuries Chris is also involved in the work of the wider hospital having helped establish the sepsis team and is active in training Emergency Medicine Trainees across the West Midlands.
He is passionate about resuscitation and the ability for it to be done well, instructing on courses teaching others how to manage a cardiac arrest and how to run trauma scenarios.