On 13th October, Khadijah and Nimra attended the annual British Association of Physicians of Indian Origin (BAPIO) 2018 conference which was held at the Marriott hotel in Bristol. The theme of the three day conference was the challenges and solutions when sourcing healthcare practitioners from across the globe to work in the NHS. It was an extremely well-attended event, with many healthcare A-list celebrities in attendance such as
President of Royal College of Physicians of Edinburgh (RCPE), Professor Derek Bell, President of Royal College of Paediatrics and Child Health (RCPCH), Professor Russel Viner and the Chief Operating Officer of the General Medical Council (GMC), Ms Susan Goldsmith.
There were many talks from inspiring and world-renowned clinicians and, more importantly, valuable opportunities to ask and discuss topical matters with the panel such as looking at the inequalities within the NHS in both junior and senior positions. As well as this, winter crisis management at different trusts was discussed and many of the more successful trusts shared their tips and suggestions to ensure that others could also have a problem-free winter and not face as many bed shortages as have been highlighted incessantly by the media. The conference, as well as providing many networking opportunities, also invited trainees and juniors to showcase their research in the form of both oral and poster presentations.
As medical students from ethnic backgrounds it was extremely empowering to see a conference where diversity and success in healthcare was being celebrated with inspiring role models who were all concerned with how the NHS could be made more diverse and open to those who are from minority backgrounds. It did however highlight the need for improved representation at the highest echelons of management to reflect the diversity that is present in the current junior workforce. Overall this was a fantastic and insightful experience and we would highly recommend it to medical students and doctors alike!