Physiology graduates contribute £22.6 billion to the UK economy every year

7th June 2022

A new report launching in Parliament today and featuring a case study from Dr Priscilla Day-Walsh from the Quadram Institute shows that physiology graduates contribute £22.6 billion to the UK economy ever year. This is equal to supporting 777,200 jobs.

In the first independent analysis of its kind to quantify the impact of physiology education on the UK economy, it was found that every £1 invested by a student in their physiology education yields them £4.40 in higher future wages.

Approximately 97% of students who study physiology related courses stay in the UK after graduating, contributing a staggering £35.6 billion to society and the public purse through higher earnings and added tax revenue. Plus, they will save £825.9 million in social costs across healthcare, unemployment benefits and crime.

The analysis, carried out by independent economy agency Emsi Burning Glass for The Physiological Society and Academy for Healthcare Sciences, demonstrates the importance and need for physiology to be at the heart of university courses, public health and clinical care.

The report will be launched in Parliament on Tuesday 7 June at a reception featuring MPs from across the country, as well as leading physiologists, educators and practitioners.

Priscilla Day

Dr Priscilla Day-Walsh

In addition to the economic analysis, the report also features case studies showing the variety and impact of occupations held by physiology graduates. Dr Priscilla Day-Walsh from the Quadram Institute spoke about an animated video she produced with the Physiological Society; Being Black in Physiology: Diversity for Scientific Excellence. This explored why equity and diversity are critical to scientific research, with insights into the roles and career prospects of black scientists.

Dr Day-Walsh also developed and co-hosted a “Microbiomes in Physiology Symposium” on the importance of the emerging microbiome research in medical physiology in health and disease.

The experience offered by the society in collaboration with the Quadram Institute has since enabled Priscilla to secure a prestigious Next Generation Research Fellowship at the Centre for Trophoblast Research (CTR) at the University of Cambridge

Case studies like this one show that, beyond the lab, physiologists are working in communities, hospitals, elite sport settings, schools, universities and many other environments with huge benefits for society as a whole.

The report is focused on the economic impact of courses related to the physiological sciences delivered by UK higher education institutions in terms of added income to the UK economy and jobs supported. The findings are based on student data from the academic year 2018-19. The total contribution to the UK economy could be greater than calculated in this report.

Read in full The Physiological Society report

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