Appointing BAME GP representatives for the Midland Faculty Board

09 September 2019

Welcome to the latest post of Midland Faculty's blog, bringing you all the latest news and developments from your Faculty.

BAME representatives

The Midlands is the most diverse area of England outside of London, and we are delighted that our Membership and Faculty Board reflects this. We consider ourselves to be a welcoming and inclusive Faculty. 

However, we recognise that our Trainees and GPs from Black, Asian and Minority Ethnic (BAME) backgrounds may experience challenges that they may prefer to discuss with designated Faculty Board Members. We have therefore appointed two BAME Representatives, Dr Onyinye Okonkwo and Dr Aaliya Goyal, to serve this purpose.

Both our BAME Representatives bring a wealth of expertise through their own professional and personal journeys as well as through supporting junior colleagues. They will work together to ensure VTS Training & Faculty CPD integrates BAME aspects & skills acquisition. They will try to support the experience and wellbeing of BAME GPs & Trainees. They hope to work with stakeholders and further encourage meaningful representation and inclusion at Faculty level.

Is your practice veteran friendly? 

I have 2 questions for you:

  • Has your Practice been accredited as Veterans Friendly?
  • How often do you ask in the consultation if a patient has served in the Armed Forces?

Key to improving healthcare for our veteran population is asking the question “Have you ever served in the in military”.

There are an estimated 2.4 million veterans in the UK, some of whom have complex needs. There are veteran-specific services tailored towards this potentially vulnerable patient group. Veterans may also be entitled to priority treatment for conditions related to military service.  Becoming a veteran friendly accredited practice is a simple on-line process and helps to raise awareness, improve understanding and better equip and facilitate GPs in their duty of care to veterans. 

The RCGP Veterans programme now has 880 accredited practices across England. The programme is now part of the NHS 10 Year Plan - To ensure all GPs in England are equipped to best serve our veterans and their families, over the next five years we will roll out a veterans' accreditation scheme in conjunction with the RCGP.

Further information about Veteran friendly practices can be found on the College website.

Faculty board meetings

We hold Faculty board meetings four times a year.  We are always delighted to welcome observers, particularly medical students and foundation doctors.   Please contact midland@rcgp.org.uk for further information.

College tutors

We are pleased to have Dr Zirva Khan, Dr Alex Lee and Dr Deepika Yadav on board as our College Tutors. They will represent Midland Faculty at AGPEC and other HEE meetings as well as take forward the education programme for the region.

Going forwards we have a full and varied programme of courses and events. We also continue to develop our wellbeing programme. Please keep checking our website for updates on our courses and events. 

Green impact for Health toolkit

The RCGP acknowledges the climate crisis, the catastrophic effect on human health of not acting decisively and urgently on climate change. The College accepts its duty to provide leadership, and urgently escalate its action at local, regional, and national level to decarbonise and promote environmental sustainability (RCGP council motion, September 2019).  The Green Impact for Health (GIFH) toolkit - this is a free online toolkit which lists over 100 actions that can improve the environmental sustainability and quality of general practice as well as saving money. Many of the strategies that mitigate carbon dioxide production also benefit health (e.g. more active travel lessens air pollution).

Developed by the RCGP using the NUS/SOS Green Impact web platform, the toolkit answers the question ‘What can I do about this in my practice?’  It gives the reason for the suggested actions and tips about how to make the change. It is being used by over 750 General Practices across the country.

You can access and test drive the toolkit on the website using the login gifh@greenimpact.org.uk with the password testtoolkit.

Finally, please can I ask you all to go to the Midland Faculty Facebook page and like and follow us so we can spread the word about our events?  Please also follow us on Twitter and Instagram.


Post written by

Brig (Retired) Robin Simpson

Chair, RCGP Midland Faculty

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