By Annie Driver
Warwickshire footballer, Gareth Mackin, 25, achieved the highest score in the UK in the Cardiac Scientist Training Programme in 2019. He is among the top one per cent of trainees in the world after sitting his Allied Professional Certified Cardiac Device Specialist (CCDS) exams held by the International Board of Hearth Rhythm Exams (IBHRE).
Originally from Cullyhanna, County Armagh, Gareth studied Cardiac Physiology (BSc) at Ulster University Jordanstown before moving to England to study Cardiac Science (MSc) at Manchester Metropolitan University.
During this he worked full time as a Cardiac Physiologist at Kettering General Hospital in the hospital’s Cardiac Investigations Department.
Of the 6,000 people who applied to join the prestigious Scientist Training Programme only 26 were chosen to take part in the Cardiac Science MSc at Manchester Metropolitan University.
He received the news of his achievements on the training programme on the morning of his final examinations.
Gareth told the Irish World: ‘I couldn’t believe it if I’m honest. It was a really amazing feeling knowing that all the long nights’ studying, carrying out research and case discussions had been worth it.’
He is now a Cardiac Scientist registered with the Health and Care Professions Council and can perform a wider variety of investigations for cardiology patients including cardiac resynchronisation therapies, implantable defibrillation therapies and electrophysiological studies.
‘Any patient with a heart condition or being investigated for a heart condition wouldn’t receive the care they do without Cardiac Physiologists/Cardiac Scientists. We are heavily involved in all aspects of the diagnostic pathway for patients and I am very proud to be a Cardiac Scientist’.
He has also been invited to be an ambassador for the IBHRE: ‘The IBHRE is a global board of examiners so to be recommended to serve as an ambassador for their Committee will be a great honour’.
‘The great Irish community that there is in England has been a massive help to me. I really enjoyed working and studying up in Manchester as it’s a fantastic city.
‘The craic and camaraderie within the GAA are second to none so it’s a little bit of home from home.’