Clinical Genetics, Research – Specialised Foundation Programme – Southampton

Employing Trust: University Hospitals Southampton NHS Foundation Trust Main base is at the Princess Anne Hospital, Southampton
Department: Wessex Clinical Genetics Service
Commencement Dates: August, December, or April
Educational Supervisor: Dr David Hunt
Tel: 023 81206170

Clinical Supervisor: Dr David Hunt
Tel: 023 81206170

Clinical Supervisor – Academic/University Mentorship: Dr Diana Baralle
Tel: 023 8120 6421

Administrative Contact: Ms S Atkins
Tel: 02380 798410

Main Educational Opportunities

The Wessex Clinical Genetics Service provides specialist tertiary care clinical genetic assessment, diagnosis and genetic counselling advice to a population of over 3 million people across the South Coast region. The department is one of the largest in the country with 13 consultants and 12 genetic counsellors and is a Genomic Medicine Centre. Referrals cover all aspects of general genetics and inherited cancer genetics, including prenatal, neonatal, paediatric and adult patients. In addition, a wide range of specialist clinics take place regularly including cardiac genetics, neurogenetics, eye genetics, metabolic bone disease, genomic imprinting, Von Hippel Lindau disease, etc. Multidisciplinary team meetings also take place for cardiac, renal and endocrine genetics, prophylactic mastectomy, orthopaedics, birth defects and others. Diagnostic genetic testing is performed by our colleagues at the Wessex Regional Genetics Laboratory in Salisbury District Hospital and via our regional Genomics Laboratory Hub in Birmingham.

Our department is especially well-integrated with the University of Southampton’s Faculty of Medicine, with four professors (including the current Dean of Medicine) and four out of five current specialty registrars undertaking PhD/MD research degrees. Between 2015-2019, members of the department achieved a total of 375 PubMed-listed authorships.

We are able to offer a range of clinical research projects and audits depending on the F2 doctor’s particular interests and supervisor availability. Uniquely, the academic foundation programme rotation to Clinical Genetics also provides the opportunity for a laboratory-based research project in molecular genetics and genomics, if desired, through collaboration with the University of Southampton’s school of Human Development and Health within the Faculty of Medicine.

Main educational opportunities

  • Weekly meetings with your educational supervisor
  • Attend outpatient clinics and MDT meetings
  • Attend ward round referrals
  • Opportunities to present cases at clinical meetings
  • Complete a clinical audit (discuss topic with supervisor)
  • Undertake a laboratory or bioinformatic project (optional)
  • Present your work as a poster/oral presentation at local/regional/national genetics meetings
  • Write up and publish a case report or research report (where applicable)

Please contact your educational supervisor early on in your F1 year to allow adequate planning and preparation for your 4-month Clinical Genetics rotation. Formal research projects require time to set up (e.g. for gaining appropriate ethical approvals) and enrolment in formal teaching programmes also requires adequate preparation time.

Formal Teaching Programmes

  • Weekly departmental teaching sessions within the Wessex Clinical Genetics Service delivered by senior clinical staff
  • Weekly seminar series in the Faculty of Medicine’s schools of Human Development and Health and also Cancer Sciences – invited speakers from around the UK
  • MSc in Genomic Medicine modules may be available depending on rotation start dates and options may be available to continue on this programme to achieve a PgCert/PgDip/MSc qualification – please liaise with your supervisor early on in your F1 year if you wish to consider this
  • Research skills training is available through the University of Southampton’s Integrated Academic Training Programme

Attendance at relevant national meetings and conferences is encouraged:

  • British Society of Genomic Medicine (annual)
  • Clinical Genetics Society (annual)
  • Cancer Genetics Group (annual)
  • South West of Britain Genetics Meeting (twice a year)
  • Dysmorphology Club (three times a year)

The post provides a wide range of formal learning opportunities. The MSc in Genomic Medicine modules are designed to allow NHS healthcare workers to complete them alongside a full-time or part-time clinical post. The structure is flexible so as to facilitate enrolled students in contributing towards their postgraduate qualification over an extended period of two or three years (or more) rather than having to complete full masters course in a single year.

MSc in Genomic Medicine website:


a.m.Cancer case reviews meeting  Study/ResearchJoin StR teaching General case reviewsObserve clinicStudy/Research
p.m.Ward roundObserve clinicGenetics Lab MeetingStudy/ResearchStudy/Research

Out of Hours/On Call

Hours WorkedWork Pattern: 0900-1700 standard working hours.  This is an academic supernumerary post with no out-of-hours commitment. 
Planned Changes