Farewell message from outgoing FSRH President - Dr Christopher Wilkinson

Posted 4 August 2016

Date: 04 Aug 2016

Type: FSRH News and Information

Dr Chris Wilkinson's term of office ended in July 2016.

The FSRH is exceptional as a medical faculty in that it crosses specialties, and links people whose interest is the delivery of high quality sexual and reproductive healthcare wherever they deliver it. Good SRH care impacts on everyone at some point in their lives. With prevention at its heart SRH care is also highly cost effective and has a profound effect on individuals, families and society. Last week I reached the end of my presidency of the FSRH and am grateful for the members giving me this opportunity and to everyone for their contribution to develop and strengthen the FSRH during this time. At the outset I was keen to ensure that the FSRH:

  • was more GP facing - GPs make up the majority of the FSRH membership,
  • was able to be inclusive other healthcare professionals and become not only cross-specialty, but also cross-professional,
  • had an organisational structure that supported the complexity of FSRH work both then and in the future, and that allowed the FSRH staff to take on many tasks previously performed by the members,
  • further developed excellent external relationships and reputation.
  • continued to provide excellent clinical guidance, standards and training.

It is therefore with some pride that I look around me and see that this has been achieved; we have 2 officers who are GPs, very involved GP members on Council, about 1000 nurses have become diplomate or associate members of the FSRH through assessment, the management side of the FSRH has been transformed through the appointment of Jane Hatfield as Chief Executive, and the reputation of the FSRH is recognised widely, both professionally and politically. Finally we have significant developments of our core functions of clinical guidance, standards and training.  However, the pride I feel is of being part of a team that has involved 100s of members and staff who had the vision and enthusiasm to both to support and to effect these developments – I thank you all.

Looking ahead, there are considerable challenges for the delivery of SRH care, not least that there are now 4 different healthcare systems within the UK, but also that they are constantly changing. Changing skill mix requirements and new technologies all also will impact on how care is delivered in the future. The FSRH put patients at the centre of care and this is clearly vocalised with the “FSRH Vision – Better care a better future” which we published in November 2015 and will form the basis for country specific FSRH work programmes going forwards. Those of you who want to make a difference but don’t feel empowered to, I encourage you to consider volunteering to work with the FSRH, because you can make a difference – I know, I have seen it almost every day in my time at the FSRH.

I have worked with Dr Asha Kasliwal for a number of years now in her role of Vice President – Standards. I know that Asha will do a great job as President of the FSRH and I wish her all the best during her tenure.