Dr Asha Kasliwal, FSRH President, January Highlights

Posted 24 Jan 2017

Dr Asha Kasliwal message to FSRH members.

Dear FSRH members,
Firstly I would like to wish you a very happy new year. I hope that you felt some optimism as the year started despite the political turbulence around us and the significant challenges facing us across health and social care.

I am conscious that there is much to do this year to support the Faculty’s aim as a charity to promote high standards in sexual and reproductive health. I am pleased that our Policy and External Affairs Team is working extremely hard to influence the commissioning and policy agenda to ensure that care is delivered to FSRH, NICE and other relevant standards. Of course this is not easy in our fragmented commissioning structures but we are working closely with Public Health England, the England commissioners group and our committees in Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland to ensure that policy makers and commissioners/managers are aware of the standards required to ensure effective patient care. I would urge you to contact our policy team if you have examples of both good and poor commissioning, tendering and delivery. The Faculty can be far more effective in influencing if we have examples from our members – these can be anonymised if necessary. Fill in our survey online.

I see many opportunities in 2017 for us to continue to build our influence and education work. For example, it is 50 years since the 1967 Abortion Act and the widening of family planning in parts of the UK and this provides us with a great opportunity to highlight the progress that has been made in reproductive rights and access – but also to point to the dangers of going backwards. I hope you will come to the joint FSRH/RCOG day on abortion care on 3 March for International Womens Day. In addition, we have a whole range of new guidance or newly updated guidance this year for you to use in your clinical practice starting with the Contraception After Pregnancy endorsed by RCOG, RCGP, RCN and the RCM. This month also sees the official launch of our webinar service (free to FSRH members) focused on a different topic each time but usually linked to a recently published FSRH guidance. We had extremely positive feedback about the pilot webinar we held last year so I do hope you find this new member benefit of help in your work.

A top priority for the FSRH this year is our review of our Diploma. We want to ensure that this key qualification in SRH continues to be as relevant, educationally sound and practical as possible for anyone doctor or nurse interested in or already doing contraception consultations. Our newly appointed Director of Education – Jo Lawton – is leading on this work supported by some of our most experienced doctor and nurse educators. Watch this space for further updates on our progress.

Finally a thank you to those members who have responded to our request for feedback about our new website and other areas of our work. This is proving to be incredibly helpful and will directly inform our next steps. As a working clinician and FFSRH I am very aware that we have not yet got the design of the website ‘right’ for many of you. This is a key priority for me and the Officers (and the staff) and we are working very hard to improve this. Please keep up the feedback. It is so helpful.

With best wishes
Asha Kasliwal, President