Dr Daghni Rajasingam is a consultant obstetrician and lead for the Birth Centres at Guy’s and St Thomas’ Foundation Trust.
She has been a spokesperson for the College for 13 years and has been involved in significant numbers of high-profile broadcast and print interviews throughout that time.
How did you first became involved with RCOG and why?
As a medical student I wanted to study obstetrics and gynaecology. When I got my first specialty training job as a Perinatal Fellow at Hammersmith Hospital, I became engaged with what the College was doing abroad and locally.
What motivated and inspired you to work with the RCOG?
Understanding the power and influence that the College has with bettering healthcare for women across the world. I also wanted the College to adapt and meet the needs of women and of the Members and Fellows.
Did anyone inspire you to work within women’s healthcare?
Shanti Raju at St Thomas' Hospital was one of the first people who inspired me to work in women's health. She had forged her way in gynaecological surgery and was one of few female surgeons at the time. My fabulous senior registrars during my medical school attachment at St Thomas' were also inspirational – Mike Dooley, Karen Morton and Ollie Chappate.
How do you feel that your work with the RCOG has improved women’s healthcare?
I feel that my media work on behalf of the RCOG has helped to highlight women's health issues to the public and my measured approach to potentially controversial subjects has enabled a more balanced public debate.
What are some of your most memorable moments at the RCOG?
Getting my MRCOG Part 2 results and knowing that I was now a member of the College; being part of the governance working party that opened the presidential elections to all UK Members and Fellows voting; and Lesley Regan being voted in as the second only female President! I am anticipating the opening of our new home as the next most memorable moment!
Who are some interesting people you have met along the way?
Jenny Murray and Jane Garvey from Radio 4 Woman's Hour. Also, Baroness Julia Neuberger who is intelligent and insightful with humanity and humility.
How important is it to encourage women to take a role in their own healthcare?
Empowering women to make decisions and have a voice is imperative. In every conversation I have with a journalist, this message is a priority – how I can emphasise women's health and wellbeing throughout their life course.
This year will see the first women's health strategy created. How important do you think this is? What impact could it have?
This is a giant leap forward thanks to the foresight of Lesley Regan, our current President. It will put women's health and wellbeing on the political map and enable us to hold the system accountable.
What is your one wish for future improvements in women's healthcare?
Global gender equality – it would impact on so many of the social determinants and inequalities of health and wellbeing.