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Jo Mountfield FRCOG

Statement for Vice Presidential election 2019

Jo Mountfield thumbnailOur college is here to support fellows, members and others who provide healthcare to women throughout the world. However, healthcare workers are in short supply and major inequalities in healthcare exist, a situation we can change using our excellent educational packages and extending interest in our examinations.  The move to Union Street is an opportunity for a positive change.

We must be innovative and courageous in our thinking and deliver solutions to bring about this change. To this end I have immersed myself in the development of our new core curriculum that encourages our trainees to be adult learners and restores the professional judgment for their supervisors, thus better preparing trainees for consultant practice. We need now to address advanced training, being cognisant of the future needs of the service.

We have a wonderful specialty and we must work to ensure interest in students and junior doctors in order that we recruit and retain the best. We must support trainers and educators at home and globally and develop more flexible training and assessment for those wishing to advance their skills or gain accreditation by alternative routes.

I can deliver on these aspirations having a strong track record of innovation both in my UHS roles, as Head of School, as workplace behaviour advisor, and then SEAC chair within the college. I will draw on my extensive experience in working with educational organisations from the GMC to HEE.

We must also act and ensure that high quality care is delivered where staffing can be particularly challenging – in remote and small communities for example. Whilst the college must strive for medical excellence, many issues doctors face can be addressed by looking outside our professional boundaries. We need to be more innovative and collaborative, working with other Colleges and organisations to produce education, training qualifications, and exams for a wider range of professionals to provide healthcare to women.  Better-trained staff working alongside us will support us in delivering high quality care within our ever-increasing workload. One example of this, in the LMS I Chair, is the roll out of a midwifery led VBAC pathway, reducing the need for Obstetric antenatal appointments.

I hear many clinicians articulate their distress at the lack of appreciation of their efforts to give high quality compassionate care in times of austerity. I have undertaken a wide range of work looking at attrition and poor workplace behaviour and have also worked as an advisor with NHSI supporting services in difficult circumstances. These experiences have taught me the importance of collaborative leadership, active listening and supporting staff in their efforts to improve. Our aim as a College must be to find ways to help all staff develop and implement quality improvements.

We all wish to work in a well-staffed, safe, highly effective and productive work environment that values and rewards its staff and supports their development. That is not always the reality, but much can be done to set things right. These are the issues I would champion as vice president.


CV – Jo Mountfield (PDF 455kb)


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