Could you be a fertility spokesperson?

rcog_logoWould you be interested in becoming a lay spokesperson on fertility issues for the Royal College of Obstetricians and Gynaecologists? The College wants to be able communicate women’s health issues effectively to the media – and is looking to recruit and train a volunteer lay spokesperson to represent the College in the media from a patient/public perspective. The College believes that it helps to hear people speak about their own personal experiences – and that lay spokespeople are good at communicating complex subjects in a clear, understandable way, which often helps the journalist to understand that subject and in turn their audiences.

If you think you might be interested and want to know more, you can find information about this here along with a job description and application form

Could you help to represent patient views to specialists?

rcog_logoCould you help represent patient views to specialists? Are you interested in a demanding but rewarding voluntary role? The Royal College of Obstetricians and Gynaecologists’ Women’s Network is currently recruiting two new lay members.

What is the Women’s Network?

The Network is a group of 14 lay volunteers (and three clinical representatives) whose experience of services as patients helps the College to better understand the needs of women.

Unlike the RCOG’s Women’s Voices Involvement Panel – which is a virtual group – the Women’s Network meets in person four times a year. Members also sit on other College committees and boards on areas such as; education and training of doctors; the development of clinical guidelines; and the implementation and monitoring of clinical audits. The Network also has its own body of work, leading on projects around particular areas it feels are important to women.

How to apply for the RCOG Women’s Network

The College would welcome applicants from a wide range of women from all corners of the UK. You can find more information on the role and details of how to apply here. The closing date for applications is midnight on Sunday 31st May.

Review recognises importance of fertility counselling

120px-GeneticcounselingIf you’ve been through fertility treatment, you’ll know only too well how important it is to get  emotional support – and this has now been recognised in a review published by The Obstetrician and Gynaecologist (the Journal of the Royal College of Obstetricians and Gynaecologists which is the professional body for fertility specialists).

The review says that clinic staff should think about patients’ emotional needs as well as focusing on treatment options, and tresses that they should view infertility solely in biological or medical terms, overlooking the vital role that fertility counselling has to play.

We know that at present fertility patients don’t always find it easy to access counselling services when they are having treatment – there are sometimes long waits to see a counsellor and not all clinics promote counselling very well to patients. It is important that this changes in the future – and that there is more recognition of the emotional stress caused by fertility problems and treatment.

You can read more about the review here. If you are finding it difficult to access counselling through your clinic, you may want to contact a fertility counsellor through the British Infertility Counselling Association (BICA). They have a list of accredited fertility counsellors here on their website.