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Council précis, April 2019

Overview of the Council meeting that took place on 5 April 2019

Board of Trustees

  • Council heard that the Board of Trustees met on 7 February 2019 and the College’s annual financial report was signed off.
  • It is anticipated that the new lay Chair of the Board of Trustees will take up the position in September 2019.


President’s Update

  • PRCOG informed Council that the Abortion Taskforce met in March and has 2 new co-chairs, Ed Dorman and Jonathan Lord.
  • The Department of Health and Social Care’s Women’s Health Taskforce, which is co-chaired by the President, will meet later this month for its third meeting and will discuss the menopause.
  • The candidates for the next PRCOG have been announced and candidate statements can be found on the website. On 9 May 2019 there will be a questions and answers session with the candidates. It will be hosted at Sussex Place and live streamed.
  • The President has met with HSIB on a number of occasions and has requested accessible and user-friendly guidance which can be shared with anyone who will be interviewed.
  • A task and finish group was established in January, led by Professor Hilary Critchley FROCG, to review patient information on morcellation and consent advice content. Public consultation on revised products will begin in April.


Disciplinary Regulations, Code of Conduct and Complaints Policy

  • A Code of Conduct and Complaints Policy have been drafted and are currently with solicitors for due diligence. Council will discuss in June and approve the documents before the Board of Trustees receives them for final sign-off in September.


Strategic development

  • Work is ongoing with Health Education England and the Maternity Workforce Strategy on developing workforce modelling.
  • More work is being done with small and rural units around staffing models. A potential project related to this with the Nuffield Trust is on the horizon.
  • The Later Career and Retirement Task & Finish group held its first meeting in March to discuss the increased numbers of consultants retiring early.
  • The 6th International Women’s Day event was held and hosted by the RCOG on 6 March 2019. The subject was choice for women.


Global health

  • An evaluation of the Leading Safe Choices programme was carried out in February, which brings together qualitative and quantitative findings from each country. This provides an in-depth analysis for what worked well and any lessons learnt.
  • Resilience in Obstetric Care, a programme in Uganda, ended in December with very positive feedback.
  • An Essential Gynaecological Skills course has been piloted in Nigeria with very strong impact. An evaluation highlighted an increased focus on patient-centred care and willingness to provide contraception and post abortion care for women and girls.
  • Taking the Lead, a new bid to promote safe abortion services in Africa, is currently being worked developed to secure funding.


Clinical quality

  • Council heard that the Each Baby Counts audit programme funding will come to an end in December, but further opportunities are being sought to continue this work alongside Each Baby Counts Learn & Support.
  • A new Head of Programme Delivery (Mandy Forester) and a Clinical Lead (Tony Kelly) for Each Baby Counts Learn and Support has been appointed. EBC L&S is a 3-year programme to introduce, test and evaluate interventions that focus on behaviours, team work, safety and a positive work culture in their units.
  • The National Maternity and Perinatal Audit funding has been extended for a further 2 years.



  • The core and advanced curricula have been submitted to the GMC who will make their decision later this month.
  • A meeting was held at the RCOG to discuss how we can provide support with training and education for abortion care in the Republic of Ireland, including accessing eLearning, offering the ASM, and a ‘Training the Trainers’ course.
  • Council discussed increasing the capacity issues with the Part 3 examination. They felt that UK trainees must have priority in the short-term for examination places so that they are not prevented from completing their training. However, the College has committed to rapidly extend capacity globally and plans are already being implemented.
  • Early bird registration for the London World Congress closes soon and the social functions this year do have limited capacity so please book ahead!



  • The third National Anti-Bullying event was hosted at the RCOG on the 4 April 2019, in collaboration with RCSEd. Feedback from the day has been extremely positive.
  • CD leadership forum on the 16 May 2019 still has places left – all encouraged to attend and promote the event
  • The ‘Supporting our Doctors’ group has been working closely with the GMC to produce resources to positively change culture in the workplace
  • The College will hold a documentary film forum on 28 May 2019 with works from around the world, focussing on many aspects of women’s’ health, including violence against women and FGM.
  • Africa Day will be held on 27 September 2019, and will showcase our excellent collaborative work


Academic Board

  • The largest ever Annual Academic Meeting was held 17-18 January 2019, with 152 delegates attending.
  • Council heard that the Board has created a Taskforce on genomics which will meet for the first time on 10 May 2019.
  • The Board also agreed to hold an Industry Sharing Day this year, which will also take place on 10 May 2019.


Women’s Network

  • Interviews for new members were held and the network were delighted at the high calibre of applicants. Florence Wilcock and Alastair Campbell have been appointed as clinical members. The network will continue to work with other excellent applicants to promote the importance of the work being carried out.
  • The first Fertility Forum was held on 30 March 2019 to better inform people about issues around fertility. Thank you to the Marketing, Communications and Events teams for their help organising the event.
  • A new YouTube channel has been created to promote the benefits of involvement and good practice to the College membership.


CEO’s Update

  • Kate Lancaster, the new Chief Executive, expressed her delight joining the College at such an exciting moment in its history.
  • Council heard that the development at Union Street is progressing well.