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Here to help: Transparent fair and sound

Jocelyn Pryce, IBMS Head of Registration and Training, reflects on Biomedical Science Day and what can be done to improve working conditions.

Here to help: Transparent fair and sound

My reflection following the recent, successful Biomedical Science Day made me aware of how diverse we are within our group of like- minded professionals. The day brought together so many people and groups, as well as individuals, from laboratory environments in the UK and further afield. All were united in a single goal – to promote biomedical science. There was a very positive feeling created by the enthusiasm of those celebrating and this will surely be encouraging to the new graduates thinking of joining 
our profession.

A large number of the “selfies” of laboratory staff groups showed happy enthusiasm and good working relationships but, sadly, this might not be the case in all laboratories. I’d like to encourage all readers of this column to reflect on their workplace and question whether there is something they can do to improve it. 

In October 2014, the Institute formalised its commitment to the Science Council Diversity, Equality and Inclusion (DEI) project by becoming a signatory to the Science Council’s DEI Declaration. This declaration sets out our ambition to improve diversity, equality and inclusion across biomedical science communities.
Here, on the Education Team, we recently reviewed our processes to ensure that we do not treat a person or group of people any differently than others. 
Our robust processes ensure external anonymity, no discrimination by characteristics protected by law or by lifestyle choices, culture, social or economic status. They are all fully auditable, and processes, such as the application for the Registration Portfolio or verification, are audited by senior staff on a weekly basis. We have an incident reporting process that generates investigation in instances where there may be concerns and the results of any investigations are fed back to the Education and Professional Standards Committee for action. So, I am confident that the education processes here are transparent, fair and sound. Can the same be said of your working environment?

Those of us who are registered with the Health and Care Professions Council will be familiar with its Standards of Conduct, Performance and Ethics, and these will form the tenet of our professional life, but sometimes the ethos of these get forgotten and people lose their way. My challenge to you is to look inside yourself and recognise any areas where improvement can be made and then take a positive step towards making your laboratory the best it can be. We should all be proud to work in biomedical science and our recent Biomedical Science Day was our first chance to celebrate this.   

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