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Rosalind Sadler West Midlands Regional Genetics Laboratory

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1 Rosalind Sadler West Midlands Regional Genetics Laboratory
Professional Bodies Rosalind Sadler West Midlands Regional Genetics Laboratory

2 Hello! My name is Ros, and I’m a Genetic Technologist.
I have been registered for 4 years. I am also a member of the ACC and the BSHG. Woop Woop!

3 NHS When asked what I do for a living, I first tell people I work for the NHS. This makes them think that I am either: Doctor Midwife Nurse

4 And then? I say that I work in a laboratory…
Then I say it’s a genetics laboratory… Pic of lab appears. Crazy evil boffin, creating weird animals and designer babies! Reassure them I work for the NHS, in a diagnostics lab.

5 Work So, when I actually tell people I’m a Genetic Technologist, they have NO idea what I actually do! Why is this? It is a relatively new job title (old ones being Medical Technical Officers). There’s not that many of us (approx 300). It’s only in the last couple of years that any formal training has been organised (thanks to professional bodies). Slide 5: Cytogenetics has actually been a registered profession since 1973!

6 But we’re registered! Well, yes, we are registered with the Voluntary Registration Council (VRC). However, if we want to move further forward, we need help and advice. How do we go about this? By joining up with other existing professional bodies, such as the ACC or the CMGS (or if they combine, the new über body). Can I emphasise here Genetic Technologists are not a Profession The Profession is Cytogenetics or Molecular Genetics, soon to be merged under an as yet unspecified Professional Title, Ros needs to find another term to describe the Skill mix group of Genetic Technologists, they are not a Profession.

7 Oh, here we go… I’m afraid so!
Why do we keep banging on about joining a professional body? As professionals, we need to be members of a professional body Ultimately, the aim of registering voluntarily is that eventually we want to be state registered. We can’t really do this alone! We need the help, advice and support that established groups can give us. Genetic Technologists need to be part of a Professional Body

8 Why state registered? If a job title is state registered, you must be on that register to use it. It also helps to protect patients. It gives assurance that staff who are registered are deemed competent to fill that role and will not be a risk to the profession, and therefore the patient. If you were being treated, you’d want to know that your sample was being dealt with by a professional. If a surgeon wasn’t registered, would you trust them? It isn’t the Profession that is state registered it is the Title ‘Clinical Scientist’ and State Registration doesn’t give the Profession protection, it protects the Patients by assuring that Staff who are registered and work under the title are deemed competent to do so and would not be a risk to the profession.

9 The benefits for you It shows that you are a professional individual.
It is cheaper for you to attend conferences run by those professional bodies. You get access to a lot of information, and the chance to talk to people from other parts of the profession. You can have a say in the future of our profession – all views and ideas are welcome, and if you’re willing to take the time to join, people know you are serious and will take you seriously too. It is not necessarily true that you get a better chance to attend conferences, Continuous Professional Development is a part of the annual appraisal process which is a requirement of being a CPA accredited laboratory

10 The benefits for us all The ACC and CMGS have been providing training for the new GT schemes, creating competencies for this and holding assessments for people undergoing training. There is a working group outlining a Higher Technologist Training Scheme, and also a career pathways for assistants starting from band 2 upwards. If we didn’t already have GT’s in the professional bodies, none of this would be happening. We even have elected GT’s who sit on the professional body councils, making sure our voices and points of view are heard. GT’s need to be aware that in the NHS the new titles will be adopted by HR as part of the Electronic Staff Record, we will all become part of Healthcare Science and be ‘equivalenced’ over to HCS Assistant/Assossiate/Practitioner/Scientist /Higher Specialist Scientists/ Advanced Clinical Expert. As appropriate The only protected title is that of ‘Clinical Scientist’.

11 Spring Meeting 2012 Next year the ACC/CMGS Spring Meeting is being held in Birmingham. 3 day event at the ICC. Question: Would we like a session (half day) at this event, or do we prefer a separate one for ourselves? Would anyone be prepared to do a poster?

12 And finally Please join a professional body.
We really can’t move our profession forward if we don’t get more technicians on board. The more of us there are, the louder our voice! If you join the BSHG (British Society for Human Genetics) you can opt for inclusive registration into either the ACC or CMGS (or future amalgamation of the two) at no extra cost – two birds, one stone! We are all professionals, and we should be proud of it! So let’s get some well earned recognition for our brilliant efforts!

13 The end If my talk has inspired you to join up, and you’d like some information, the following websites are very useful: VRC - BSHG - ACC - CMGS - And if in doubt, just ask someone at your lab (scientist or maybe even a GT) about how to join up.

14 Thank you for listening!

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