Samuel Noel "Sam" Strachan is a cardiothoracic surgeon, former Medical Director of Holby City Hospital, current emergency medical locum registrar and former surgical registrar who worked on the Darwin Ward of hospital from 2006 to 2008. Whilst working at Holby, he had a child, Grace, with boss Connie Beauchamp. In February 2017, he was appointed as the hospital's new Medical Director, responsible for overseeing the ED and the wards. However in July 2017, he resigned from his role and became a locum registrar within the ED. In August 2017, Sam resigned from his post, leaving Holby with Grace.
Sam joined the hospital in 2006 as a result of an expansion of the Darwin ward. From 2006 to 2008, Sam's job in the hospital was a cardiothoracic registrar before he became a general surgical registrar in 2008. During his time at the hospital, he was romantically involved with many people, notably Connie Beauchamp, with whom he later had a child. In late 2008, Sam's estranged son Kieron came to visit him, and they decided to move to New York together, where Kieron was a successful violinist.
Interference in the ED (2016-17)
In February 2016, Sam was in the UK attending a conference when his girlfriend Emma started suffering from severe stomach pains. Grace called Connie and she got an ambulance to go to the hotel that they were staying at. Whilst being treated, Sam arrived but wanted Emma to be treated privately instead but Connie told him that in her condition she couldn't go anywhere. Realising that the operation would have to be done Sam volunteered but couldn't do it, leaving Connie and Jac Naylor to perform it. (CAS: "Hearts and Flowers")
The following week, Emma was still recovering but the company Sam worked for had booked a connect to his and Grace's New York flight due to the fact that he had work and she had school. Although Connie disagreed with his choice due to the fact they'd be leaving Emma behind, Sam explained that Emma knew that Grace always comes first. However, later in the day Connie said that she didn't want Grace leaving again but when Grace overheard Connie telling Jacob that she didn't want Grace living with her, Grace had a panic attack. Sam used this against Connie and told her that Grace would be better off going back to the US with Sam. When they were boarding their private jet in the evening, Jacob and Connie drove after them and arrived just in time for Connie to tell Grace she wasn't going to let her go again, much to Sam's disappointment. (CAS: "Just Do It")
In September, Sam visited the UK upon receiving the news of Connie and Grace's car crash. He and Connie were left waiting anxiously whilst Grace was having an operation in theatre after it was discovered that she had a tear on her aorta. To their relief, Grace pulled through but Connie admitted to Sam that she blamed herself for what happened to Grace. (CAS: "Strike Three")
In February 2017, Jacob contacted Sam to request that he attended Elle's hearing. He urged Connie not to bring Grace to the hearing, but she ignored him and brought her along anyway. In the bathroom, Grace smashed a mirror and had a seizure. As a result of Elle's quick thinking and actions, Grace was saved and admitted to the ED. Nevertheless, Sam was furious with Connie for taking her in the first place, and informed her that things would change when Grace got better. (CAS: "You Are Your Only Limit") The following week, Sam signed the contract which made him the new Medical Director of the hospital and Connie's new boss. He was also worried when Grace woke up and was unable to communicate with him and Connie. (CAS: "Binge Britain") Later in the month, Steph Sims was admitted to the department, the woman responsible for Connie and Grace's car crash. Sam soon took charge of her treatment, and let Cal shadow him on an experimental procedure. Sam also made the decision that it was time to take Grace home. (CAS: "Slipping Under")
In March, Cal had a complaint lodged against him by the daughter of a patient who died in his care. However, when the woman exhibited signs of metal illness Sam soon assured Cal that it was nothing to worry about. (CAS: "It Starts With the Shoes") The following month, Alicia woke up in Sam's bed, and was mortified of the situation. When they arrived for work, Sam announced that budget cuts would be taking place, and that all consultants would have to re-interview for their jobs. During the shift, Alicia hit a patient with a fire extinguisher when he became violent towards one of her patients. Sam was irritated at the thought of having to explain it to the board, but assured her that they didn't sleep together as he slept on the sofa. (CAS: "Sleeping With the Enemy")
Later in April, Sam was furious with Connie when she attempted to slip Grace's epilepsy medication into her cake. Grace finally spoke again, only to tell Connie how much she hated her. She and Sam agreed that it would be best if he took Grace to live with him for a while. (CAS: "Child of Mine") The following week, Sam announced further budget cuts within the department, and informed Cal that he'd no longer be able to do his surgical rotation. After Dylan was sent home, Cal told the other doctors that they should stand in solidarity with the consultants and organise a work-to-rule protest. Sam took them aside and warned them that they'd better not mess things up if they want things to change. At the end of the day after the death of a police officer in the department, Cal confronted Sam in reception and announced that he would be contacting the union to organise a strike. (CAS: "When the Whistle Blows")
The first day of Cal's strike arrived the following week, and Sam was heavily reliant on Lily to help out in the ED, as the only junior doctor not taking part in Cal's strike. However, when no-one volunteered to help out, Sam made up for the staff shortages by working a shift himself. Sam found himself in a worse situation when Lily left her shift, despite the fact she disagreed with Cal's reasoning. (CAS: "Reap the Whirlwind - Part One") Later that day, Lily was struck by a car and ended up in the ED; all the doctors on strike soon went inside to help her. However, Denise Ellisson, the husband of Roy Ellisson who'd died earlier that day, accused his death on the strike. That evening, Cal was stabbed to death in the hospital car park by Roy's son Scott who fled the scene without being caught. (CAS: "Reap the Whirlwind - Part Two")
The following week as the investigation into Cal's death was taking place, Sam seemed more interested in sorting out the other issues within the department. Dylan took offence to this over at the pub and dunked Sam's phone in his pint of beer in anger. (CAS: "Break Point") Later in May, Sam spoke to Dylan and Elle, informing them that the consultant interviews would be taking place within the next few weeks. He also encouraged Lily to take her FCEM exams and apply for the post if successful. (CAS: "End of the Road")
In June, Sam held the consultant exams. He managed to interview all but Elle; this was due to the fact he had fled the hospital to ensure the safety of a patient who had been discharged. At the end of the day, he realised that he cared about patients too much, and resigned from his position as Medical Director. (CAS: "It Had to Be You") The following week, Sam turned up in the ED as the new locum registrar, re-recruited by Hanssen. He disobeyed Connie's instructions by leaving the ED to attend the scene of an accident. She was close to informing Hanssen, but decided to give him another chance. (CAS: "War of the Roses")
Later in July, Sam asked Connie for some time off to attend Grace's physiotherapy appointment. However, Connie denied his request and insisted that she'd take Grace herself, in an attempt to get closer to her. During the shift, Sam further angered Connie by ordering restricted drugs without her approval and lying to the pharmacy. At the end of the shift, the two ended up locked in a storage cupboard and kissing amidst an argument. (CAS: "Man Up") Later that month, Connie brought a recovered Grace into the ED, but she eventually decided that she'd be better off living with Sam. (CAS: "Somewhere Between Silences - Part Two")
Behind the scenes
Tom Chambers appeared on Casualty as Sam Strachan in the 2016 series 30 episode "Hearts and Flowers" which aired on 13 February 2016. He also appeared in the episode the week after. Unlike many other Holby City guest crossover characters, Sam made his appearance in Casualty after his time in Holby City; most others make guest appearances on Casualty whilst still a regular. Chambers reprised his role as Sam in the third episode of the 31st series in September 2016. He reprised his role in episode 22, returning in a recurring capacity as the hospital's new Medical Director.