Our Team of Experts

Nabil Haddad FRCOG Consultant Gynaecologist Head of Unit


Nabil Haddad qualified in medicine in Cario in 1976. He trained in London, Southampton, Liverpool and Edinburgh. In 1989, Nabil was appointed as a Consultant Gynaecologist in Chester. He developed the Fertility and Assisted Conception Service and has led this service since. He was instrumental in pioneering transport IVF and had the first ever successful baby from that technique in 1990.

Nabil is committed to the provision of total fertility services and advocates a fitness for fertility approach in order to prepare couples for treatment and improve successful outcomes. Nabil serves on many local and national fertility committees, his research is clinically orientated and he has published on many aspects of fertility care.

Simon Wood MD FRCOG Consultant Gynaecologist, Sub Specialist in Reproductive Medicine & Surgery


Simon Wood was appointed as a Consultant in Chester in 2003 and as well as providing general fertility and assisted conception has introduced an Andrology (Male infertility) service including a surgical sperm retrieval service.

After Graduating from Liverpool University in 1990, Simon undertook his gynaecological training in Merseyside and subsequently in Manchester before returning to spend more than 5 years at the Hewitt Centre for Reproduction in The Liverpool Women's Hospital.

After his initial research post he became the first doctor to undergo sub specialist training in Reproductive Medicine in the North West and he completed his training in 2002.

His interests are in all aspects of infertility but especially Male infertility, and in 2004 was awarded his MD thesis for work in males who do not produce sperm.. He presents regularly at national and international meetings and is the author of more than 50 papers and presentations.

Karen Woodcock (Quality Manager/ Advanced Nurse Practitioner) RGN, RM


Karen joined the service in 1992 and since then has been able to develop her role and became one of the first nurse specialists within the trust. Karen qualified as a nurse in 1985 and subsequently trained as a midwife before taking up her position in the fertility unit. Karen has subsequently been in the vanguard of fertility nurses with training at the Universities of Liverpool and Chester Karen undertook ultrasound and prescribing training and became one of the first nurses to undertake Oocyte retrievals.

Karen undertakes nurse led clinics for new referrals, follow ups and patients undergoing assisted conception.

Karen lectures at the University of Liverpool & Chester and lectures at conferences in the UK and Europe. Karen was a founding member of the senior Infertility Nurse Group in the UK She has almost been delighted to be instrumental in the development of the new assisted conception unit.

Sarah Kerrod (Sister) RGN, RM.


Sarah was appointed Sister in the fertility unit in 2006. She joined the unit in 2002 having previously worked in the neonatal Unit at the Countess of Chester. Sarah Qualified as a Nurse in her native Yorkshire in 1989 before training as a midwife in 1991. Her interest in fertility started early on in her career when she worked for a short while in the fertility unit at St James before moving to Chester.

Hazel Blaxall (Enrolled Nurse)


Hazel joined the service in 2006 and brings a wealth of experience following a wide and varied career in general nursing since qualifying in 1979.initially at the Royal infirmary before moving to the Countess. Hazel has a real interest in the field of Reproductive Medicine and after many years of general nursing is enjoying the specialism of this field of nursing.


Jenny joined the service in December 2008 from the cardiology unit in Arrowe Park where she worked since qualifying in 2003,.She trained locally at Chester University. She is delighted to return to Chester and is enthusiastic about the field of Reproductive Medicine and has enjoyed joining the team.

Embryological Team

 Emryo team1 Embryo team2

From April 2008 the embryological and seminology services at the Countess of Chester have been provided by The Hewitt Centre at the Liverpool Women's Hospital. We are fortunate to have the provision of a fully trained embryologist every day from a pool of 10 embryologists, who each spend a week at a time at Chester. These embryologists provide the semen analysis for the fertility clinic and for the primary care community as well as providing us with a full range of assisted conception treatments.

Jo Grice Fertility Counsellor


Joanna was appointed as the fertility unit counsellor in 2005, prior to this she has gained a wide experience working in the North East Wales Trust Mental Health Team, Intensive support services, Family Therapist for a private Fostering Agency, Probation Service and has worked with substance misusers and families with drug and alcohol related issues, she has worked as childline counsellor, relate and Victim Support as well as women's Aid.

Joanna graduated in Counselling and Psychotherapy at Bangor University before gaining further qualifications including Family Therapy at the Merseyside Psychotherapy Institute Psychology at the Open University and a Diploma in Stress Management. Joanna is currently studying Cognitive Behavioural Therapy.

As well as a number of professional organisations Jo is a member of BICA - British Infertility Counselling Association. Her service is based on individuality, dignity and trust.


Secretarial / Admin

Samantha Roberts


Samantha has been working as administrator/ medical secretary to the fertility unit since 2000. She qualified as a medical secretary, gaining her AMSPAR Diploma in 1987, before working for a brief time at the Wrexham Maelor Hospital in the surgical directorate before moving to the gynaecology department at the Chester Royal Infirmary as medical secretary to Mr Haddad in December of 1988.

Kathy Brown


Kathy moved to the fertility unit as support clerk in January 2008. She has worked within the trust for 13 years initially as ward assistant in the neonatal unit before moving to the paediatric clinic as a clerical officer.

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