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15 June 2015

Sheffield Teaching Hospitals Principal Embryologist awarded an MBE

Rachel Cutting, Principal Embryologist at Jessop Fertility at Sheffield Teaching Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust, has been awarded a Member of the Most Excellent Order of the British Empire (MBE) in today’s Queen’s Birthday Honours List (Saturday 13th June 2015).

The MBE is in recognition of her years of commitment and outstanding service to assisted conception alongside her significant contribution to research and developing the embryology profession through her involvement with professional bodies and national organisations.

Rachel, who has worked in assisted conception in Sheffield since 1994, has helped change the way IVF treatment is carried out across the country and has been previously named Healthcare Scientist of the Year.

Rachel has been committed to national initiatives such as the single embryo transfer, improving the safety of patients in the Sheffield. Jessop Fertility now carries out around 700 procedures every year, with 60% requiring just one embryo transfer.

Single embryo transfer at the unit now has a very similar success rate to double embryo transfer, but with a much lower chance of multiple pregnancy which is the biggest single risk factor for mothers and babies following fertility treatment and leads to higher mortality rates.

Chief Executive of Sheffield Teaching Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust, Sir Andrew Cash, was amongst the first to congratulate Rachel on her MBE: “I am delighted to learn of this excellent news about Rachel’s MBE. This is a richly deserved award that honours her years of commitment and outstanding service to assist patients in fulfilling their dream of becoming parents. Rachel’s hard work and passion for assisted conception is unending, and this award reflects her absolute commitment to the NHS and to supporting our patients with the best possible care. I am sure that our patients and staff will join me in congratulating Rachel on this great honour.”

Andrea Galimberti, Clinical Director of Obstetrics, Gynaecology and Neonatology at Sheffield Teaching Hospital NHS Foundation Trust, said: “It is testament to Rachel’s vision, leadership and dedication to patients that she has been recognised in the honours. We are fortunate to have Rachel on our team as she is nationally renowned for her dedication to innovation and clinical excellence.”

Rachel lives in Chesterfield with her partner, Chris and her two children Joseph and Henry.

Commenting on being awarded the MBE, Rachel said:

“Receiving this honour is a source of immense pride for me. Whilst I received the award, it reflects the hard work done by many dedicated people who I am fortunate to work alongside and I would like to thank my colleagues for all the support they have given me.”

Aside from her role at Sheffield Teaching Hospitals, Rachel was Chair of the Association of Clinical Embryologists from 2011-2014 and has many professional roles such as a national assessor for embryologists and a member of the HFEAs licences centres panel. She speaks regularly at international conferences and is committed to improving IVF services for patients worldwide.

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