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Equalities and MWRES | Dr Anjana Mackeen

Dr Anjana Mackeen

Since moving to the UK in 2019 with a wealth of obstetrics and gynaecology (O&G) knowledge and experience, Dr Anjana Mackeen has been working as a locally employed doctor (clinical fellow).

Anjana also undertakes many educational roles, is the RCOG SAS and LED representative for the Kent, Surrey and Sussex (KSS) region and is working towards gaining the Certificate of Eligibility for Specialist Registration (CESR).

Dr Anjana Mackeen

"I have learned a lot by being in this Committee … becoming a SAS and LED Committee member was a good turning point."

After living and working in numerous countries, namely Sri Lanka, Bangladesh, the Maldives, Malaysia and Oman, Dr Anjana Mackeen has built up a wealth of experience in the field of obstetrics and gynaecology (O&G).

In 2015 she received her Master’s in O&G (MObGyn) and passed the MRCOG exam in the same year. After working as a junior consultant in 2019, Anjana decided to move to the UK to take up a clinical fellow post.

Clinical fellow

A clinical fellow post is a type of locally employed doctor post, and the experience of doctors in these posts varies from foundation level through to consultant level. They are employed on local contracts rather than national terms and conditions, and are usually on temporary rather than permanent contracts.

When arriving in the UK, Anjana unfortunately was not given a shadowing period due to staffing shortages but thanks to her previous experience Anjana quickly adapted to the new environment. For Anjana, this highlights the need for rota coordinators to be more conscious of the skills and experience of staff, rather than focusing purely on filling gaps.

Many international medical graduates (IMGs) face similar challenges when they transition to UK practice. Even if a doctor has significant clinical experience, adjusting to new processes and systems can be difficult.

"Everyone knows O&G, that's why they're in the specialty. But protocols, guidelines, all those things could be completely new to them."

IMGs often take up LED roles when they first move to the UK. Although there is inconsistency across regions, Anjana shared that, within her own region (KSS), LED posts are far more common than SAS posts.

When Anjana first took up an LED post, she was not aware of the differences between LED and SAS roles and only learned more when her colleague was offered a SAS position.

Anjana currently remains in an LED post due to the lack of SAS roles available in her region that would support her in developing her skillset.

"I did not know about contracts and things like that or, you know, how [SAS roles] have [nationally agreed] contracts and everything until I actually became an RCOG SAS and LED Committee member."

Throughout her time as an LED, Anjana has had the opportunity to develop in numerous ways with the support of an educational supervisor and the study budget available to LEDs at her trust. As well as working towards gaining her CESR qualification, which is a route to joining the GMC Specialist Register, Anjana has also taken up many educational roles. These include volunteering as an RCOG OSCE examiner, teaching local medical students and mentoring IMGs and doctors in training stepping up from ST2 to ST3. While it is often the norm for more experienced trainees to be paired with trainees needing additional support, Anjana noted that:

"The trust was able to recognise that I am quite [a] senior person. It doesn't matter [whether] I'm a trainee or not; I'm able to do that role."

As well as being the local faculty group representative for LEDs at her Trust, Anjana is also the regional representative for KSS on the RCOG SAS and LED Committee. In her representative role, Anjana wants to expand her regional network of SAS and LEDs and demonstrate to LEDs the range of roles available should they wish to pursue them.

"Getting involved in College [work] is something that's achievable by everyone. I want [LEDs] to know what they can reach and there's so many roles that exist that we can be involved in."

SAS week

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