Message from the President - 25 September

As we enter a new phase of the pandemic, Russell reflects on what we have achieved together so far. Looking at newly released guidance, reports and webinars he also explores the RCPCH conference online and the sizeable collection of resources being made available through this - free to all our members.

It’s been a busy week on the COVID-19 front. You may have seen the press conference the UK Government’s Chief Medical Officer and Chief Scientific Officer held on Monday morning that set out where we find ourselves, and the new phase of the pandemic that we will face together. 

The marking of this new phase has led me to reflect on the work we have been doing as a College over the previous months. If you haven’t had a chance to read our impact report, I would really encourage you to do so. There is a range of work that has been undertaken across the College, and this report gives the big picture on our collective efforts. I was struck by the common thread woven through these different projects; ensuring that children and young people are not forgotten in the face of an unprecedented crisis. 

As we bolster ourselves to face the next phase of the pandemic (shrugging off the haven’t we done this before feeling) it’s important to recognise what we have already been able to achieve together. We have made the voices and experiences of children and young people known at the highest levels, from chief medical officers, to NHS leaders, public health bodies and politicians across the four UK nations.  

We’re now moving in to winter, a time when - pandemic notwithstanding - we are very used to grappling with full wards, busy EDs and pressure on all our services. We have a lot of work in train to help deal with these pressures. At the end of last week we published our bronchiolitis guidance, with recommendations on the management of children with this and lower respiratory tract infections in hospital settings. We are hosting a webinar about this guidance on Monday lunchtime, which you can sign up for. We have more work coming on winter pressures in the coming week, with our position statement expected to be published next week. I am grateful to the staff and clinical advisory groups who are driving this important work forward. 

Finally, you will know that we have taken our annual RCPCH Conference online this year. We are launching later this afternoon with an online event followed by a series of seminars led by specialty groups. You can see information about the RCPCH Conference Online on our website. If you can’t join us today, all the seminar sessions will be recorded and put on our website so you can watch them when it suits you. There will be further seminars over the coming weeks led by specialty groups, view the full schedule on our website. You can also take a look at the ePoster gallery microsite, where you can access over 200 posters on the latest paediatric research.

We work best as a specialty when we learn from each other...

I really would encourage you to make the most of the resources available through RCPCH Conference Online. They are all free to members. We work best as a specialty when we learn from each other. This is perhaps more important this year than ever before. A huge thanks to the College Events Team that have worked incredibly hard over the previous few months to ensure that we can come together, even if it’s not in the usual way.  

That’s all for now, 


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