The leading recruiters of participants to the 100,000 Genomes Project in the region have been recognised for their efforts by the West Midlands Regional Genomic Medicine Centre (WMGMC).

The Birmingham Children’s Hospital (BCH) team of Sharon Parkes, Maria Kokocinska and Jessica Kainth became the first members of the WMGMC ‘100 Club’ when they were presented with certificates by Sarah-Jane Marsh, chief executive of Birmingham Women’s and Children’s NHS Foundation Trust, and Professor Dion Morton, WMGMC Director.

All three of the team, led by BCH rare disease lead Dr Larissa Kerecuk, are now well on the way to the 500 mark as BCH continues to lead the way in the West Midlands in signing up participants to this nationwide healthcare transformation programme, with their 1,500th recruit imminent.

Professor Morton said: “This team have been vital to the success of the West Midlands Genomics Centre. Their contribution to the programme has been essential and is very much appreciated.

“The team at BCH have driven recruitment to the 100,000 Genomes Project in the West Midlands from the start. Their dedication and enthusiasm is an example to all involved.”

Ms Marsh added: “We’re amazingly proud of the work of our outstanding 100,000 Genome Project recruitment team.

“At the heart of their boundless energy is a drive to make things better for our children, young people and families by getting answers that could help them and others in the future – and to see them in action is inspirational.

“They deserve all of the praise they’ve received and I know the passion they have will mean their excellent work will continue over the coming weeks and months – 2,000 recruits here we come!”

Patients with rare diseases and their family members are being recruited to the 100,000 Genomes Project as well as those with many cancers.

It is hoped that by reading their whole genome – all of the genetic information which makes each of us unique – we will better understand what causes the conditions and how to treat them in a more personalised and targeted way. In some cases there may be a diagnosis where there was none before.

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