ASPIRING health care workers from all over the North-East had the chance to have a go at dissecting organs during an event aimed at getting young people into medicine.

About 60 young people, most of whom are studying for GCSEs and A-Levels, took part in the Operating Live workshop, which was held at Belmont Community School, Durham.

Students who have hope of becoming doctors and nurses had the chance to dissect brains, eyes, hearts, lungs, livers and the digestive system of pigs to give them a better insight into what those careers could involve.

Operating Live, a Tamworth-based company, appeared on Dragon’s Den in 2018, when it secured backing from dragons Deborah Meaden and Peter Jones.

The Northern Echo:

Operating Live at Belmont Community School

Technician Brett Forbes, who helped to deliver the session, said: “It’s aimed at students who want to go down a medical career path, either as doctors or nurses and it’s a chance to see whether they like the blood and guts side of it.

“Lots of schools don’t do dissection so the students don’t get the chance to do it..”

Sixteen-year-old Ellie Waters, a pupil at Consett Academy, was one of the students taking part. She said: “It doesn’t smell great but it’s been really interesting.

“I’m interested in medicine and this is the first hands on thing I’ve got to do.

“I’d like to work in A&E I think.”

Charley Matthews-Robertson, also a pupil at Consett Academy, added: “My whole family comes from the NHS so I was interested to see what it was like. It’s given me a bit of an insight into it.”

The Northern Echo:

Paul Marsden, headteacher of Belmont Community School, said: “It’s a fantastic opportunity for our students to actually get first hand experience of a very serious profession and to see how doctors and surgeons work.

“I was speaking to some of the students and some of them had got to dissect eyes before but this was a whole new level.

“They absolutely loved it, especially speaking to the doctors there and asking them about what it’s like to operate.”

He added: “It’s given our students a real chance to see if it’s the sort of thing they want to do so we’re thrilled and hope we get them to come back.”

Iain Kennedy, from partner organisation Medic Mentor, also attended to talk to students and give them a better idea of what they need to do to secure a place in medical, dental and veterinary schools.